The Ambassador Beat : Caitlyn Kolb

My Club to Club Exchange to Alberta

In 2017 I was lucky enough to participate in a 4-H Club to Club Exchange to Consort, Alberta, and to this day that is one of my most memorable 4-H experiences…

Myself, along with eight other members from my association and two chaperones got to travel to Consort, Alberta. We started off our trip by meeting our host families and getting comfortable in our new homes for the week. Each of us were paired up with a “twin” who we lived with for the week. It was a neat experience for us from Ontario because our homes are all in town or on the outskirts of town where we have a quick drive to get groceries or don’t have to drive far to a city for a day trip. However, in Consort it was the norm to drive 2 hours just to get groceries! So, for us that really was the middle of nowhere!

During our time in Alberta, we visited the Drumheller dinosaur museum, went to Capt Ayr lake for a day, and even toured a honey and bison farm! Some of my favourite memories included going to a rodeo in Vermillion and spending a night in a cabin in Banff! There were endless opportunities to learn a little more about a new province and to interact with new people.

Two girls standing in front of tourist spot in Alberta

I think the most amazing part of this experience were the amazing friends and connections I made through this exchange. I still keep in contacts with many of the 4-H members from Consort and have even been back to visit them three more times! I am so grateful to have been given this opportunity and for the friends it has given me.

Group of youth walking down rocky cliff in summer time             To any 4-H’ers considering participating in a Club-to-Club Exchange I would highly recommend going. It was an amazing opportunity that has benefited me in so many ways!

 

Brant 4-H Hosts Virtual Cloverbud Club

By Laura Goulding

Despite the uncharted territory that has followed the COVID-19 pandemic, many 4-H volunteers have risen to the challenge of hosting virtual and online clubs so 4-H’ers can continue to learn and connect with others during this time. Even Cloverbuds!

The Brant 4-H Association began hosting a virtual Cloverbud Club in June and 18 participants joined the club. The club plans to host six meetings over the summer, each with a focus on a different topic. Youth and volunteers meet virtually every two weeks for a short and sweet 20 to 40-minute-long meeting. Within the two weeks leading up to the meeting, Cloverbuds have a variety of at-home activities to complete related to their upcoming meeting topic.

The first meeting topic the Brant 4-H Cloverbuds focused on was recycling. “We got them to make their own paper hat to wear to the meeting and one of the club leaders did an activity where they held up different items and the kids identified if it was garbage, recycling or compost,” says Lesleigh Elgie, Brant 4-H Cloverbud Club Leader. “They also made a gift for their dad for Fathers’ Day out of something recycled.” 

The club’s second topic was called “Our Heritage”, just in time for Canada Day! Cloverbuds wore red and white to the meeting, played Canada Day bingo and were encouraged to make a special Canada Day treat. Each youth also decorated a quilt block about themselves and one of the leaders digitally ‘sewed’ each block together to create one big quilt.

Craft made into digital quilt.

“We ask them kids to get the activities done the day before the meeting, we email all the completed activities to one leader and she puts them into a slideshow. Then during our ‘show and tell’ time we play the slideshow and each kid gets to tell the group about the activities they did. It gives them all time to talk for a few minutes,” says Lesleigh.

Like many other virtual clubs, technology can sometimes pose a challenge but Lesleigh notes that being prepared is key and it’s all about trial and error. She also mentions that the Cloverbud age group is very welcoming and grateful for the interaction with their friends and the activities are a lot of fun for them.

When asked about one piece of advice she had for anyone interested in running a virtual Cloverbud Club, Lesleigh said, “Give it a try! It’s been a fun experience and we look forward to keeping it going over the summer months. Certainly, if anyone has any questions they can reach out and we’d be happy to share our schedule and support any other Cloverbud experience.”