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:
4-H Youth Development
Many students try to plan for their futures, but life happens and it is important for youths to know what they can do to prepare for these life moments. This was the theme of the Georgia 4-H Life 101 Financial Literacy Retreat held at Andrew College May 18 and 19. Sixty-two Georgia 4-H’ers in sixth through eighth grades, six Certified Teen Leaders from 10 Southwest District counties, and two Florida delegates got a taste of college life while learning about growing financially.
Friday during the retreat, 4-H’ers heard from the president of Andrew College, assumed roles as game show contestants as they played The Price Is Right or Not, participated in a community-service activity and enjoyed recreation activities such as yoga, basketball, a corn hole tournament and line dancing. To end the evening, each 4-H’er created their own ice cream sundae before heading to the dorms to spend the night. On Saturday, a variety of Financial Literacy classes were taught by 4-H and Family and Consumer Sciences (FACS) agents and instructors from the community on budgeting, basic banking information, the importance of saving while young, making healthy life choices, the relationship between educational attainment and career opportunities, and what comes out of a paycheck. This conference was made possible with the assistance of Extension Innovation Awards from the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences and all of those locally who assisted.
Family and Consumer Sciences
UGA Extension in Randolph County distributes FACS newsletters focused on diabetes prevention and healthy living information within the county. FACS agents also send the monthly “Growing Together” publication, which goes to 125 Head Start students and daycare centers in the county. Monthly presentations on various topics are offered to low-income residents on various FACS topics.
Agriculture and Natural Resources
The newly donated UGA Extension complex is enclosed within a fence and open land. As in most areas of rural Georgia, home gardens are a large part of everyday life. Traditions and practices are passed down through generations on how, what and when to plant these home gardens. Because most of these home gardens are not profit-driven, the productivity is often not measured. The Randolph County Extension office decided to establish a garden with two main goals in mind, to provide an opportunity for local schools and 4-H members to come and learn via local field trips, and to provide local gardeners real-time scenarios with actual techniques and practices to improve garden yields and production.
Several local elementary classes visited the garden and the 4-H agent taught hands-on lessons using living examples of plants, flowers and fruit, which helped tie together lessons from the classroom. Many local gardeners visited the plots and experienced the drip irrigation system in person. Throughout the summer, updates on garden productivity were published in the local newspaper. The produce that was grown and harvested was shared with the public. On 6,617 square feet (0.15 acres), we grew 524 pounds of watermelons, 88 pounds of tomatoes, 20 pounds of peppers, 222 pounds of okra, 356 pounds of squash, 104 pounds of sweet corn and 45 pounds of field corn for a total of more than 1,359 pounds of produce. The impacts of the garden are multifaceted and have the potential to be ongoing. It has and will continue to provide educational opportunities for youth and 4-H groups as well as demonstrate conservation gardening techniques and practices to support local gardeners.