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:
AGRICULTURE AND NATURAL RESOURCES PROGRAM
Research is the backbone of UGA Extension. Specialists and researchers provide reliable data and information to farmers, producers, homeowners and the general public for many different aspects of production and life. Much of this research is done in partnership with county agents. Real-world trials and research plots at the county level provide these specialists and researchers important inputs and data points as well as giving our stakeholders the opportunity to contribute and participate in the research themselves. Randolph County Extension’s Agriculture and Natural Resources agent continues to assist specialists in several different research projects. In 2019, projects included collecting samples for Peanut Burrowing Bug research, monitoring traps and recording data for a Natucket Pine Tip Moth study in young planted pine stands, and a team member attending a multi-state Irrigation Efficiency Project called AgWet. AgWet is a multi-year study during which soil moisture sensors and app-based irrigation scheduling models are being implemented on farms in real-world conditions to help producers make better decisions on irrigating their crops. Other notable research in 2020 included the evaluation of ALS inhibiting herbicide resistant Yellow Nutsedge in peanuts. The involvement with research projects such as these helps the ANR agent connect the county clientele to experts and specialists. These relationships help us translate the science of everyday living for families, farmers and communities to foster a healthy and prosperous Georgia.
4-H Agent Develops Leadership Opportunities for youth in Rural Southwest GA County
Every child deserves the opportunity to succeed. That is why Youth Development is so important. We must engaged youth in positive experiences while preparing and equipping them to meet the challenges of adulthood and achieve their full potential. There are local opportunities for youth to engage in leadership opportunities such as the Youth Leadership “Randolph”. In this program, 25 youth can take part in the “Youth Leadership in Action” curriculum and community tours. They can become a 4-H Ambassador by being selected to teach younger children about topics like STEM, Pollinators, Healthy Living and others. They can also become part of the 4-H Technology Team, learning about the use of computer technology. Another opportunity for youth is to become a 4-H District Board Officer, using leadership skills to lead and encourage other 4-H’ers in the 41-county district to be leaders. They can become a certified teen leader as well, completing a certification course and then assisting with local 4-H events as well as overnight 4-H events leading younger youth in programs and activities.
As a result of the leadership training and real-world applications provided to the high school students in Randolph County leadership programs, they have improved social skills, positive behaviors, increased academic achievement, increased self-esteem, and increased self-efficacy. With youth being a part of a youth empowerment program, they are achieving goals and making a difference in Randolph County. Youth participating in these programs reflect increased self-confidence and a more positive outlook on their futures. More specifically,
- 18 of the 25 youth received a certificate of completion for the Youth Leadership Randolph class.
- There were 7 volunteers giving 25 hours of service to the programs by serving as presenters/facilitators.
- 16 leadership students volunteered 5 hours of time to reading to 114 Head Start students in 7 different classrooms as a service leadership project.
- 3 youth leadership members enrolled in college for the fall.
- 20 youth are now active Interact members of Rotary Club International.
A member of the youth leadership class stated, “I need to learn to be patient and encourage people more. Leaders can be born, but are mostly developed. Teamwork is how you get things done.”
UGA Family and Consumer Sciences Extension programs and publications provide chronic disease education, prevention and management programs for Georgians that are at risk for or suffering from diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, heart disease and/or cancer. Our local office can provide publications and assist residents with programs in adjoining counties. With education, we are more likely to adopt skills regarding the prevention or management of their chronic disease. By learning skills that can address chronic disease, we can reduce the cost of health care for both employer and employees, time lost from work, and reduced need for public assistance through disability payments.