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
UGA Cooperative Extension in McIntosh County provides many agricultural services to local residents. Services and resources offered by the office include soil, water and plant-tissue analyses, in-office and on-site consultations for farmers and homeowners, and educational programs focused on environmental sustainability, pesticide safety and conservation. The Agriculture and Natural Resources (ANR) agent worked with local beekeepers to form a 19-member beekeeping club. Through monthly club meetings, McIntosh County Extension delivered programs on important beekeeping topics such as apiary establishment, beehive management and control methods for common pests and diseases of honeybees. With materials from UGA’s Trees for Bees program, McIntosh County Extension offered several pollinator conservation workshops. The more than 50 youth and adult participants in the Trees for Bees workshops gained a better understanding of native pollinator species, built their own native bee hotels and learned how to plant pollinator-friendly home gardens.
4-H Youth Development
McIntosh County 4-H enrolled 458 youth in fourth through 12th grades in 2019. In-school club meetings served every McIntosh County public school student in fourth through eighth grades once per month in the science classroom. The primary focus of the McIntosh County 4-H program in 2019 was developing a robust and diversified after-school program to engage students in safe, healthy and fun youth-development activities. Over the summer, a menu of 10 unique local 4-H activities engaged 39 youth. McIntosh 4-H’ers contributed a total of 40 service hours to the St. Simon’s Sea Turtle Project and McIntosh County Animal Shelter through summer programs. In September 2019, monthly after-school clubs started at the elementary and middle schools. Thirty-two fourth and fifth graders and nine sixth through eighth graders are participating in after-school clubs, with a wait list for the elementary club. Youth County Council began meeting in October. This group of nine fifth through ninth graders is helping guide program planning for the McIntosh County 4-H program
Family and Consumer Sciences
McIntosh County Extension offers free nutrition education through the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP). EFNEP delivers a series of educational nutrition programs, which give participants the opportunity to develop skills, increase knowledge, influence changes in behavior and improve their daily lives. Food demonstrations and taste-testing encourage clients to sample and prepare new foods. In 2019, EFNEP provided 108 adult educational sessions and 67 youth educational sessions to clients in McIntosh County resulting in improved nutrition, health and lifestyle choices among residents.