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4-H Youth Celebrate Centennial Through Service

Friday, Nov. 16, 2012


Ann Henderson

USU Extension 4-H agent, Box Elder County

Phone: 435-695-2542


Julene Reese

USU Extension writer

Phone: 435-797-0810



LOGAN, UT – As a way of marking the 100th anniversary of the Utah 4-H program, 4-H members were issued the “Centennial Service Challenge” to give four hours of service each month during the centennial year. Utah youth exceeded the expectations of staff members across the state by logging in a total of 15,624 hours.

“We are very proud of our 4-H members,” said Ann Henderson, Utah State University Extension 4-H agent in Box Elder County and committee member for the centennial service challenge. “Participation in service is such an important activity for youth. They learn to recognize the needs of others, figure out how to address those needs and use their talents and knowledge to make a difference.”

Service projects consisted of a wide range of activities such as teaching elementary-age students about invasive and native plants and helping them plant native wildflower seeds, trick-or-treating for local food pantries, babysitting, cleaning, gardening, working and judging at county fairs, assisting with Operation Military Kids projects and leading sewing, cooking, science and technology camps at county summer youth programs.

Kevin Kesler, director of the Utah 4-H program, said 4-H teaches youth to become contributing members of society, and giving service is a big part of the 4-H youth development program. 

“It was fun to see the youth so excited about helping others through service this year,” he said. “When groups of youth focus on the needs of others instead of themselves, positive things happen.”

Henderson said that many, many people from around the state received help because of the 15,624 hours.

The challenge started October 1, 2011, the beginning of the 4-H year, and ran through September 30, 2012. According to challenge totals, 33 youth each contributed 48 or more service hours and 16 contributed more than 100 service hours. Juab County alone had seven youth who contributed 100 or more service hours, and 4-H member Eric Babb of Utah County contributed 276 hours of service, the highest number of hours for any youth.

County service hour totals include: Weber, 3,817; Juab, 2,939; Wayne, 2,587; Box Elder, 2,457; Utah, 1,399; Millard, 1,300; Uintah, 482; Garfield, 153; Tooele, 128; Summit, 112; Washington, 111; Morgan, 50; Sanpete, 42; Salt Lake, 28; and Grand, 20.

Henderson said a grant was given from the state 4-H office to provide four $100 prizes for the youth who met the challenge and contributed 48 or more hours. Those names were then put in a drawing and one youth from each age division was drawn to receive either a $100 scholarship to attend a state 4-H event or a gift card of their choosing.

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