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.
Agriculture and Natural Resources
Franklin County has one of the highest farm-gate values in the state. A high percentage of that can be contributed to the broiler industry. Franklin County also ranks high in hatching-layer production and beef-cattle production. Many of the programs offered through UGA Extension in Franklin County address issues that arise within the cattle industry. Additional programs offered through the Extension office included home-gardening meetings, corn- and soybean-production meetings and beef-production meetings. Issues-based programming is a main focus for UGA Extension. Working with farmers to provide programming that meets the need of local production, the county Agriculture and Natural Resources agent works with university specialists to make an impact in the local community. In 2018, programs were offered through the county office to address issues in marketing cattle, parasite control, poultry and more.
Through university resources, the Extension office is able to provide answers for homeowners and farmers on many topics including soil fertility, safe pesticide application, water usage, home gardening and crop and pasture management. Extension offices provide soil, forage and water testing through the Agricultural and Environmental Services Laboratory at UGA. Agents also can identify plants, insects, diseases and weeds, and give fertilization and pest management recommendations.
4-H Youth Development
The Franklin County 4-H Club offers a plethora of educational opportunities, which aim to connect information learned in school, such as math, science, writing and social studies, to real world applications. Students in fifth grade participate in monthly in-school club meetings that align directly with the state educational standards and focus on presenting information in a fun, hands-on way. Middle- and high-school students have the opportunity to participate in 4-H at school during monthly club days. A homeschool program is also offered in the county and the current focus of this program has been on Project Achievement and youth development.
Franklin County youth have equal opportunity to participate in a surplus of activities that include livestock exhibition, poultry judging, livestock judging, Project Achievement and various community-service projects. In addition to this, camp opportunities are offered at all formal Georgia 4-H centers and through day camps and farm days.
Franklin County 4-H’ers are strongly encouraged to become active members of their community by participating in leadership activities and community service, all while advocating for things they are passionate about.
Family and Consumer Sciences
Although Franklin County does not have a Family and Consumer Sciences (FACS) agent based in the county Extension office, we strive to assist local residents with their questions. Common questions cover food safety, food preservation, dealing with mold and mildew, healthy meal planning, nutrition, family budgeting, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed) resources and more. These issues and others are answered through a wide variety of free UGA Extension publications available at the county office and phone conferences with FACS agents from surrounding counties. Often neighboring FACS agents are conducting programming that our county residents are welcome to attend.