4-H clubs look to establish a community among the club’s youth and adult members. The experiences that shape a child’s growth into adulthood come not just from the family, but from many sources within the community. These include school, places of worship and extracurricular programs like 4-H. Participation in 4-H engages youth in experiences that develop the child to become part of the larger village. 4-H volunteers play a key role developing the experiences that get youth involved in their community.
Each year Sussex County 4-H holds a social to honor our volunteers whose year-long efforts make a difference in kid’s lives. We are fortunate in Sussex County to have volunteers who have committed many years of their time. We’re fortunate, as well, to have youth who come through the program and opt to become volunteers. In this way the 4-H community continues to grow and thrive.
Years of service by 4-H volunteers are recognized through pins and certificates representing milestone years. Special awards are made to individuals and businesses that contribute to 4-H.
Local businesses are acknowledged through the 4-H Business Award that recognizes outstanding and continuous service to the 4-H program. This year we’re proud to recognize Thor Labs for their ongoing financial support of our programming.
The Sussex County 4-H Youth Development Award is presented to an individual for outstanding and continuous service to the program, Mackenzie Kratzsch. Mackenzie started with the 4-H rabbit program as a child and has worked diligently as a volunteer the last five years to make our rabbit program, the largest in NJ 4-H, even better. She shows rabbits professionally and shares her knowledge and skills with members of two rabbit clubs.
The Friend of 4-H Award is presented in recognition of distinguished service and outstanding leadership abilities. This year’s award goes to T.R. Shotwell. T.R. has volunteered with the 4-H Market Animal Sale for over 30 years. He helps by. identifying buyers as they bid on the 4-H member’s animal during the sale. As the bids climb, so does T.R.–right up the livestock fence to point out the bidder! His enthusiasm has always made the Sale more fun and exciting for everyone.
The 4-H Alumni Award
recognizes individuals who were active members of 4-H as youth and continue to
contribute to the program. Lisa Connelly is our alumni award winner. Lisa has volunteered
with 4-H for almost ten years leading an artisan crafts club where older
members learn advanced crafts and techniques. She has shared her enthusiasm and
exceptional art skills creating and painting exhibits and displays for 4-H
The Lois Chammings, Community Service Award recognizes a group or individual for their contributions to the community. This year we’re honoring Florence Constantine. Florence has been a 4-H volunteer for 54 years! She has taught literally hundreds of 4-H’ers sewing and life skills over the years. More than that, she has helped youth to become confident, caring, contributing members of their communities.
Other volunteers celebrating notable anniversaries with Sussex County 4-H include: Diane Gill, 25 years; Lori Wunderlich, 30 years; Tara Bowles, 50 years; Joy Ricker, 60 years
4-H volunteers help 4-H youth to:
- Learn by doing
- Develop leadership and life skills
- Make new friends
- Give back to the community
- Build connections with others
- Prepare, do, and share.