Since 1955, the Massachusetts 4-H Foundation has been focused and clear about their mission: fostering youth development. During their 60th annual meeting held this May, a gathering of staff, trustees, volunteers, supporters and 4-H club members took the opportunity to applaud the work of six decades.
Board Chair Kent Lage, conducted annual Board business, and then acted as Emcee for this festive event. Joanne Brown received special recognition for her boundless energy and enthusiasm as a volunteer working with two 4-H clubs as well as regional and statewide organizations. All five summer 4-H camps were awarded monetary gifts from The Yawkey Foundation.
And those who benefit directly from efforts of MA 4-H Foundation were there: participating students. Plant-A-Smile 4-H Club members from Newton wowed the audience with a presentation about their tech-savvy GIS mapping project. With the help of a grant from ESRI (a geographic technology company), they were able to obtain information about Civil War Soldiers killed in action, 23 of whom were found to be buried in Newton Cemetery. It was just in time for the 150th anniversary of their town monument. This is an excellent example of contributions 4-Hers make to their cities and towns. Not to mention raising the spirit of the places where they live.
Lily Raposa, from Sheep, Stars and Rumenators 4-H club and has been active for 5 years, even raising goats in her yard. She was invited to speak at MA Agriculture Day at the State House in March, 2015. The presentation she gave before hundreds of people, including the Governor, was shared. Lily’s poise, as one who is comfortable with public speaking, beautifully exemplified one of the many goals of 4-H.
Executive Director, Laurie Flanagan, and her staff also organized a beautiful reception in the Massachusetts Horticultural Society gardens where guests had an opportunity to enjoy the beautiful grounds and network with each other.
MA 4-H Foundation generates and provides resources to help expand 4-H programs throughout the Commonwealth. Programs and Activities Supported by the Massachusetts 4-H Foundation: Club and Volunteer Support; Animal Sciences; Science, Engineering and Technology (SET); Conferences and Teen Programs; Communication and Community Service and Urban Programs. 4-H is one of four program areas of UMass Extension, part of the Center for Agriculture at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.
For more information on the Foundation and ways in which you might choose to be involved, go to: http://www.mass4hfoundation.org/