Making A Difference in Our County
University of Georgia Cooperative Extension is working hard for its constituents. The following are examples of Extension’s impact in the county over the past year.
Due to the pandemic, our county office was closed to the public on March 16, 2020 and did not reopen until May 18, 2020. This caused us to approach our mission from a different viewpoint. Actions were taken to deliver our services to our clientele as seamless as possible and we were successful.
Agriculture and Natural Resources
Provide research-based information in the area of agriculture and natural resources to all residents. Educational programming is developed and designed to assist individuals in making sound economical environmental decisions that affects everyday life.
Due to the pandemic, our county office was closed to the public on March 16, 2020 and did not reopen until May 18, 2020. This caused us to approach our mission from a different viewpoint. Due to the pandemic many programs shifted to virtual delivery.
Despite the pandemic the Chatham County Agriculture and Natural Resources area was able to conduct 124 Adult educational programs reaching 10,615 participants. The Chatham County Master Gardeners (MGEV) conducted a weekly virtual plant problem clinic. The MGEV Training Course was completed virtually.
Family and Consumer Sciences
UGA Cooperative Extension assisted 9,056 Chatham County residents through 202 Family and Consumer Sciences resources and programs on topics such as chronic disease prevention through nutrition and physical activity, managing personal finances, homebuyer education, healthy homes, food safety and preservation, and parenting.
Expanded Food and Nutrition Program (EFNEP) transitioned from in-person programs and demonstrations to virtual delivery. The Chatham County EFNEP program conducted 1,556 sessions reaching 328 individuals. 92% of participants reported they ate more fruits and vegetables, 64% were more physically active, 67% reduced the risk of food borne illness, and 72% compared food prices more often.
In an effort to provide supplemental science and enhance self-wellness opportunities for Chatham County youth to help in preparing proficient and healthy learners, the 4-H staff delivered hands on lessons based on the academic standard and provided mindfulness yoga sessions in 4th & 5th grades.
In 2020, COVID – 19 reshaped the way we delivered face-to-face programming. Instead of meeting in person with the youth, Chatham 4-H redesign the school curriculum lessons for virtual delivery. Chatham County Extension staff created monthly educational lesson for 68 in-school clubs serving 1262 students. Chatham 4-H staff modified science lessons by providing recorded science sessions and emailing them to all our teachers. We ”Zoomed” in weekly for mindfulness yoga in order to help minimize the stress throughout this pandemic. As a result of 4-H youth were able to participate in multiple activities: Weekly yoga sessions students were able to engage in physical activity while improving self-esteem, mindfulness and learning to code with the pandemic.
Teachers were provided with educational lessons, resources and tools to assist with virtual classrooms such as: COVID-19 Time Capsule Activity Booklet, Earth Day virtual Recycled Art Challenge and other STEM lessons.