4-H and Youth

Wisconsin 4-H and Community Youth Development programs are part of the University of Wisconsin-Extension, Cooperative Extension in partnership with local, state and federal government in each Wisconsin county.

4-H and Community Youth Development programs have been and continue to be delivered in a variety of ways. From neighborhood and community 4-H clubs to after school programs, they provide young people a chance to learn new skills, gain self-confidence and contribute to their communities. Opportunities are created to provide youth real world experiences that teach leadership and citizenship skills.

4-H provides 4 essential elements for young people:

  • Belonging (Heart of 4-H) – Youth need to know they are cared about by others and feel a sense of connection to others in the group.  This is done through 4-H by the development of a Positive relationship with a caring adult, providing an inclusive and safe environment.
  • Mastery (Hands of 4-H) – Youth need to feel and believe they are capable and experience success at solving problems and meeting challenges to develop their self-confidence.  By exploring 4-H projects and activities, youth master skills to make positive career and life choices.
  • Independence (Head of 4-H) – Youth need to know that they are able to influence people and events through decision-making and actions.  By exercising independence through 4-H leadership opportunities, youth mature in self-discipline and responsibility and learn to better understand themselves.
  • Generosity (Health of 4-H) – Youth need to feel their lives have meaning and purpose.  By exploring 4-H community service and citizenship activities, youth can connect to communities and learn to give back to others.

Research Shows 4-H Helps Young People Excel beyond Their Peers

For a decade, preeminent youth development scholar, Dr. Richard Lerner, and the team at the Institute for Applied Research in Youth Development at Tufts University have been working with faculty at land-grant universities to conduct “The 4-H Study of Positive Youth Development”.  This is a longitudinal study that began in 2002, surveying more than 7,000 adolescents from diverse backgrounds across 44 U.S. States.

This in-depth, longitudinal study has discovered that the structured learning, encouragement and adult mentoring that young people receive through their participation in 4-H plays a vital role in helping them achieve future life successes.  Highlights of the results include:

4-H youth make more healthy choices.  Young people in 4-H are:

  • 3.4 times more likely to delay sexual intercourse by Grade 12;
  • Shown to have had significantly lower drug, alcohol and cigarette use than their peers; and
  • 2.3 times more likely to exercise and be physically active.

4-H’ers excel in school and the sciencesYoung people in 4-H:

  • Report better grades, higher levels of academic competence, and an elevated level of engagement at school;
  • Are nearly two times more likely to plan to go to college; and
  • Are more likely to pursue future courses or a career in science, engineering, or computer technology.

This study also finds that girls in 4-H are more than twice as likely to participate in science, engineering, or computer technology programs than their peers.

Young people in 4-H are committed to improving their communities.  A notable trend of the study indicates that 4-H youth are 3.4 times more likely to actively contribute to their communities when compared with youth who do not participate in 4-H.

To learn more about “The 4-H Study of Positive Youth Development”, visit www.4-H.org/about/youth-development-research

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  • Cultivating Creativity – Planting Pumpkins Party October 16, 2018
    Cultivating Creativity!   Let’s begin a new adventure in Horticulture.  We will be collaborating with the Marathon and Langlade county 4-H Programs to bring several workshop to you.  The first is “Planting Pumpkins Party”. See the flyer for more information. Limited to 25 youth! Click here for the pdf version of the flyer – Planting Pumpkins FLyer
  • 2018 4-H Annual Leaders Meeting & Elections October 15, 2018
    Mark Your Calendars! Our 4-H Leaders Association Annual Meeting will take place on November 12, 2018 beginning at 6 p.m. Everyone is invited to attend. Each club should have an adult and older youth in attendance. There will be program updates as well as elections. It’s time to recruit for new 4-H Board Members. Adult […]
  • 2018 4-H Charter Renewals – Due November 1st! October 15, 2018
    Don’t forget: All 4-H Clubs or Projects with a charter must have their charter renewal forms in to the 4-H office no later than November 1st!  If you have any questions, please contact Holly before November 1st. holly.luerssen@ces.uwex.edu or 715-539-1076
  • Horse Massage Clinic – Date Change! October 15, 2018
    Date Change as of 10/16/18 –  It will now be held on Nov 18th! Upcoming Horse Massage Clinic – See Photo for more information.
  • 4-H International Program is seeking 2019 Host Families October 5, 2018
    Summer 2019 4-H International Exchange Opportunities! Published on September 27, 2018 by amber.rehberg Have you ever thought about traveling abroad? Are you interested in learning about other cultures and lifestyles? Would you like to make international connections? If you said yes to any of the above questions, then you should consider participating in the […]
  • 4-H Maker Mentor Team – Now forming in Lincoln County October 5, 2018
    It’s time to create a team of older youth and adult leaders to lead Lincoln County 4-H be trained as 4-H Maker Mentors in the Emmett Project. Do you like science, technology, engineering, and math? Do you like building things? Do you like to be creative with a wide variety of supplies? Maybe you just […]
  • Parenting Class ACT Raising Safe Kids Program Offered October 4, 2018
    This 10 session class supports parents in creating a safe, healthy, and stable environment for children and families. Learn how to identify your parenting style, promote positive behaviors, guide media use, understand and manage anger. ACT Raising Safe Kids Parenting Program
  • Archery Project Leaders Needed October 3, 2018
    Archery Project – Leaders Needed We are excited to kick start the new Lincoln County 4-H Archery Project. Are interested in joining the new leadership committee for the Archery Project? We are looking for leaders that know and understand the skill of archery, as well as, those that are interested in Wildlife Ecology.  Wildlife Ecology […]
  • Share your Service Project Story! September 25, 2018
    Share your Service Project Story! Have you done an outstanding service project and want to share your story?  The Wisconsin 4-H Foundation is looking individuals and clubs to share their story.  See more information…. https://blogs.ces.uwex.edu/4hyouthline/2018/09/18/share-your-service-project-story/
  • Older Youth Trip and Awards Information – Update September 19, 2018
    Would you like to travel?  Have you been honored for the great work you do in 4-H?  Now is your chance. Youth in 6th grade and older may now complete the resume and cover letter for various trips and awards in Lincoln County. If you have any questions about the trips, awards, or the packet […]

If you have any questions regarding 4-H Youth Development in Lincoln County, please contact:

Holly Luerssen, 4-H Program Coordinator for Lincoln and Langlade Counties.
U.W. Extension Lincoln County
801 N. Sales Street, Suite 101
Merrill, WI 54452
Phone – 715-539-1072
FAX – 715-539-8323
Email: holly.luerssen@ces.uwex.edu