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:
AGRICULTURE AND NATURAL RESOURCES
McDuffie County Extension is proud of its support of agriculture and horticulture. Our office offers a complete battery of tests to help producers and homeowners solve problems and increase productivity. These tests cover soil, water and feed, among numerous other things. Our office submitted a wide assortment of samples for analysis last year: 295 soil, 16 feed, 10 micro and 13 water samples. These samples came from the agricultural community as well as homeowners. Working with our large commercial nurseries, we also submitted 85 plant disease samples to help them with integrated pest management. We provided residents with a wide variety of free publications related to an array of agricultural topics. These publications covered topics like lawn care, care of orchards, insect control, herbicide and pesticide use, and beekeeping. Additionally, we completed a large number of on-site visits and office contacts to provide research-based educational information to the public. Cattle are an important part of the county’s agricultural makeup, and our office continues to work with local cattlemen and their association and activities. Noting the importance of the local community, the Extension office offered an assortment of horticultural classes for homeowners. This year, participants attended classes on planting shade trees, composting, integrated pest management and the care of indoor plants.
FAMILY AND CONSUMER SCIENCES
The UGA Extension Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) program provides answers for Georgians about canning, freezing, food preservation and safety each and every day. Foodborne illness can be costly to the state and local community. Preventing foodborne diseases will prevent visits to physicians or emergency rooms, loss of work time and wages. UGA Extension offers certified trainings and is prepared to assist. The FCS agent coordinated and instructed ServSafe® manager training and certification. Fifteen participants from a multicounty area were trained and tested; 13 received the certification, which is required by all food service establishments.
4-H YOUTH DEVELOPMENT
Georgia 4-H’s mission is to assist youth in acquiring knowledge, developing life skills and forming attitudes that will enable them to become self-directing, productive and contributing members of society. This is accomplished through hands-on learning experiences focused on agricultural and environmental issues, agriculture awareness, leadership, communication skills, foods and nutrition, health, energy conservation and citizenship. McDuffie County 4-H impacts young people through in-school programming and after-school and summer activities, such as camp and District Project Achievement.
McDuffie County Extension saw their two agents retire or move on to new occupations. New additions are Mark Koenig, the Agriculture and Natural Resources agent, and Jessica Eubank, the new 4-H Youth Development and Family and Consumer Sciences agent. Koenig has an extensive background in agriculture and worked for Ohio State University Extension for 17 years. Eubank has a background in animal science and agricultural education. She spent the last eight years teaching science at the middle school level. She is excited to build up the 4-H program in the county and has plans to continue to grow FCS programs in McDuffie County.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.