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Did you know that Dunn County is part of a national and global positive youth development organization with more than 100 years of history?

4-H uses educational opportunities and hands-on learning to promote key life skills such as: leadership, teamwork, citizenship and public speaking. Long term studies show that 4-H youth tend to grow into resilient adults. Youth who sign up for 4-H can explore rocketry, shooting sports, horses, art, dog training, robotics, photography and so much more – there are literally hundreds of projects from which to choose.

More than 20 4-H clubs participate in Dunn County, doing community service that makes the community stronger. We also host Building Bridges, a fun and supportive after school club in partnership with the Eau Claire Area Hmong Mutual Assistance Association.

4-H’ers are four times more likely to give back to their communities than other people their age. They are also two times more likely to make healthy life choices and two times more likely to participate in science, technology, engineering and math activities.

Is there a child you know who might get something valuable out of this kind of support and learning? We can help you sign them up!

The 4-H members of Dunn County would like to show the whole community how 4-H can provide invaluable enrichment and a more positive future. When people think about 4-H around here, one of the first things that comes to mind is the Dunn County Fair. Since 1885, youth in our area have used the fair experience as a way to show the world what they have learned. 4-H projects allow members to learn by doing — gaining skills that go beyond the literal knowledge about the project itself. As they exhibit at the fair, their skills are tested. They are asked to show the responsibility of following rules and guidelines. They develop skills needed to win with integrity and lose with grace, while encouraging others to do their best.

The fair runs the whole last week of July (July 24-28) with a wide range of fun events, shows and rides. Check the fair out at http://dunncountyfair.org/. Look for details at dunn.extension.wisc.edu/4-h-youth-development/.

4-H magic happens because of the more than 130 Dunn County adult 4-H Volunteers who donate thousands of hours each year.

These carefully screened adults help 4-H members to learn and grow through the fun and educational activities they plan in conjunction with the youth themselves. Volunteers also work hard to ensure that youth have financial access to opportunities for learning, like camps and trips.

We now have a financial assistance fund to help more youth participate. 4-H volunteers help raise money through the sale of the Dunn County Plat Book (available at the UW Extension Office – new version will be out this fall), the delicious pie and ice cream social on Sunday at the fair, and by staffing the 4-H fair food booth. Please stop by and say hi! The 4-H program relies on these funds to keep opportunities affordable for 4-H members.

We hope you will join us at the fair to see what we have been working on, enjoy some good food, and support our amazing youth.

Call the Extension Office if you would like more information about joining 4-H as a member or a volunteer.

Please tell your friends and family — this article and information about 4-H are available in Hmong and Spanish as well as English at our website: dunn.extension.wisc.edu.

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Luisa Gerasimo is the Dunn County 4-H Program Coordinator, she can be reached at the University of Wisconsin Extension Office: 715-232-1636 or by email:

lgerasimo@co.dunn.wi.us.

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