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County’s 4-H program earns award

The county’s 4-H student leaders include (in no particular order) Jay Jackson, Dustin Godwin, Ella Hart, Alex Ross, Carleigh Parham, Dylan Rolin, Rowdy Rutherford and Austin Schrock.

The county’s 4-H student leaders include (in no particular order) Jay Jackson, Dustin Godwin, Ella Hart, Alex Ross, Carleigh Parham, Dylan Rolin, Rowdy Rutherford and Austin Schrock.

Escambia County has been selected as one of six counties in Alabama as a Centennial Youth Initiative (CYI) County.

Ken Kelley, county extension coordinator, said the county was chosen “based on excellence in programming and for going beyond the programmatic levels achieved in many other counties.”

On Monday, Feb. 9, the county commission recognized the county’s 4-H student leaders and staff for their achievement.

Extension professionals across the state are working closely with adult and youth advisory groups to ensure that 4-H in every county is an exciting and fun place for young people aged 9 to 18 to belong and learn.

“We are taking what has been good about 4-H since its founding more than 100 years ago and applying it with new ideas and technologies to develop the next generation of citizen leaders,” said. Dr. Paul Brown, Alabama Extension associate director.

Brown said the state’s 4-H’s Centennial Youth Initiative allows young people to take the lead in developing a 4-H program that suits their needs.

“Including youth in planning encourages increased participation in 4-H, and it will also encourage older youth to continue in 4-H,” he said.

Six counties have recently earned the Centennial Youth Initiative Designation in recognition of their county 4-H team’s efforts to transform and revitalize 4-H.
Escambia, along with Mobile, Washington, Baldwin, Cherokee and Etowah counties, earned the distinction because of their excellence across the 4-H programming spectrum.

This designation will provide a full-time Alabama 4-H Foundation Agent dedicated to growing 4-H programs in each of the six counties. Representing Escambia is Cynthia Knowlton.

Currently, more than 120,000 young people participate in 4-H programs in Alabama — 1,000 are located in Escambia County, Kelley said.

To learn more about 4-H, call (251) 867-7760.