The 4-H Ontario Ambassador program provides youth with advanced level training in leadership, citizenship, communications and public relations. Ambassadors put their energy and 4-H experiences to work recruiting new members and sharing the 4-H story. Throughout 2015, each of 4-H Ontario’s six Ambassadors will submit blog entries about their experiences in the program. The 4-H Ontario Ambassador program is proudly sponsored by GROWMARK, Inc. and UPI Energy LP. For more info on the Ambassador program click here. To book an Ambassador for you event please complete the request form.
Submitted by Laura Scott, 4-H Ontario Youth Ambassador from Grenville County 4-H Association
Explaining 4-H and the Smiles that Come With It
“What is 4-H?” This is a question that, many, if not all reading this, have either asked somebody, been asked or tried to answer that infamous question known to all 4-Her’s; past and present alike. As the summer comes to an end and the miles that I’ve put on this year as an Ambassador increase, there’s one question that I always stumble over the answer for, “What is 4-H?”.
During our Ambassador training, we were given the answer to that. 4-H is a grassroots organization that works to build leaders in youth, among other things. However, that’s not something that you can say to a five year old who can’t wait for his sixth birthday so he can join the 4-H Cloverbud Program. So you have to pull out the most captivating aspects of the 4-H program, and convince them to give it a shot! It’s easy to talk to the kids who love tractors and animals, or who love to do crafts, but the kids who really aren’t sure, they’re the ones that you have to pull out those really unique clubs, like paintball, pizza or pottery.
I’ve also come to realize that other events and activities 4-H has to offer are great attention grabbers too! Some things that I’ve noticed that really interest potential new members include camps, conferences, provincial opportunities, scholarships, and bursaries.
One of my favourite parts of being an Ambassador has become clear this summer as I spend more and more time promoting 4-H and meeting new people; kids cannot wait to join 4-H. The best part of my day, nine times out of 10, is watching the face of a little girl or boy girl light up when they tell you that they get to join 4-H next year because their birthday was last month or is next week. These kids are so excited to join the program that their enthusiasm is nothing short of contagious. 4-H needs these members and they need them desperately. Members like these are the members that are going to be “lifers” and are going to be the next generation of leaders. They will be the ones who always have an answer to the question “What is 4-H?” because they have lived the experiences and can share them with others. There is nothing I love more about being an Ambassador than meeting these kids.