Making A Difference in Our County
We're working hard for the citizens we serve. Here are some examples of successful projects from the past year:
Floyd County Extension
programs help enable citizens to make sound decisions to improve quality of life as it relates to social and economic well-being and the environment in which we live. During 2016, Floyd County Extension staff presented 171 educational classes in 4-H and Agriculture and Natural Resources, and made contact with more than 10,000 citizens in Floyd County. To protect our local environment, Floyd County Extension presented 19 educational programs on the safe and proper use of fertilizers and pesticides for both homeowners and professional pesticide applicators. Part of our outreach efforts included the use of local media resources, which led to the creation of 42 news articles and newsletters that were disseminated by our local media outlets. The Floyd County Extension staff received four state, regional and national professional awards for innovative and effective educational programming.
LET GO WITH LEGO BLOCKS
Among the top of all phobias is the fear of public speaking. According to research from the National Institute of Mental Health, public speaking anxiety affects three out of four individuals, or 75 percent of the total population. To help alleviate the anxiety triggered by public speaking, Floyd County 4-H developed an activity that allows 4-H’ers to play and “Let Go” of their public speaking anxiety with Lego blocks. Each participant built an original Lego creation based on a theme. Participants gave a brief presentation about their creations along with the engineering involved. Sixty-two youth participated in six Lego-specific programs, and seven adults provided volunteer or staff support for each event. Adult and youth partnerships were an important part of this endeavor, as the overall goal was to allow young people to let go of their public speaking anxiety.
DEMONSTRATION GARDEN AT CHIEFTAINS MUSEUM
Major Ridge was a significant leader of the Cherokee Nation at the beginning of the 19th century. He lived on the property known now as Chieftains Museum from 1819 to 1837. He established a plantation where the museum sits today. To educate the public about the Ridge Farm, Native American agriculture and Southern agriculture, the Chieftains Museum Advisory Board requested assistance from the UGA Floyd County Extension agent and Master Gardener Extension Volunteers. They created a demonstration garden to provide an educational scene for school groups and adults to learn about the workings of this historical home and its Native American and Southern agriculture. To date in 2016, 461 kindergarten through 12th-grade students have toured the garden as part of the museum's field trip program, where they learned about the history of Cherokee agriculture along with the crops the Cherokees grew. The executive director of the museum said, “The Major Ridge Demonstration Garden has become an invaluable asset to the museum, both as a beautiful landscape feature and as an educational tool. It would not have been possible without the creativity, enthusiasm and hard work of our Floyd County Master Gardeners. Because of their efforts, this garden is preserving the past for the future in our community.” The garden has become an inviting place for visitors of all ages to gather and immerse themselves in the history of the Major Ridge home and Chieftains Museum. In August, the Major Ridge Demonstration Garden became the newest stop on the Rosalynn Carter Butterfly Trail.University of Georgia Cooperative Extension is working hard for its constituents. The following are examples of our impact in the county over the past year.