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.
4-H Youth Development
In 2018, 336 youths were enrolled in Crawford County 4-H. This represented all fourth, fifth, and sixth graders in addition to homeschooled students and junior and senior members. While in-school programming constituted a majority of our enrollment, 50 students completed at least one out of school activity.
Crawford County students were everywhere this summer! Sixteen students attended four different five-day, overnight camps and learned about everything from herpetology to health, zip-lining to white water rafting, water filtration to foraging, independence to creating lifelong friendships.
In-county programs also did exceptionally well and were well attended. We saw 29 different students for 10 programs ranging from sewing camps to visits to Noah’s Ark.
This summer, our staff had 1,328 hours of contact time with Crawford County youth.
Agriculture and Natural Resources
Crawford County Extension made more than 1,500 contacts through in-office and on-site consultations, phone calls and emails. More than 170 participants were delivered a weekly Agriculture and Natural Resources newsletter that focused on listing local food sources, announcing in-county and surrounding area Extension courses available and timely tips. More than 150 soil, water, forage, insect, weed and plant-disease samples were processed through the local office.
Several courses were offered throughout the year and focused on sources of local food, composting, hay and forages, as well as a three-day Middle Georgia Sheep and Goat Short Course. Nearly 20 participants logged 10 hours each of education with the sheep and goat short course. With Crawford County’s leadership, five extension agents representing six counties brought lessons to beginning sheep and goat producers. Partnership with Fort Valley State University (FVSU) also was utilized to bring participants to a working farm for hands-on experience.
Family and Consumer Sciences
Millicent Price is the FVSU Family and Consumer Sciences agent for Crawford County. Some programs offered in FACS are:
- Money management and budgeting
- Food and Nutrition Education
- Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP)
- Nutritional and health awareness for adults and children
- Positive youth development
Crawford County has become a food desert. Piggly Wiggly closed in 2016, making it difficult to access affordable food. County residents must travel 15 to 20 miles to the nearest grocery store. A countywide collaborative effort established monthly visits by the Middle Georgia Community Food Bank. Through the direct efforts of the FVSU county agent, 100 families were able to access fresh produce and goods.
Georgia ranks 18th for obesity in youth aged 10 to 17. Motivating youth to stay fit and eat healthy can reduce their chances of becoming overweight, and decrease their chances of having type 2 diabetes. The FVSU Crawford county agent, in collaboration with the Crawford elementary school, provided technical and education activities to 74 youths. Of those, 70 percent demonstrated the ability to read food labels and choose healthier snacks. The participants engaged in track and field events and fitness activities.