Positive Youth Development

Six façons de donner en retour à l’occasion du temps des Fêtes

En cette période des Fêtes, nous vous invitons à célébrer vos racines 4-H, à exercer une influence positive sur votre communauté et à montrer au monde ce que les 4-H signifient pour vous!                        

Vous avez besoin d’aide pour commencer? Voici quelques façons dont vous pouvez exercer une influence positive sur votre communauté en cette période des Fêtes :  

Faites du bénévolat 
Le bénévolat est une excellente façon d’aider les autres, de célébrer votre communauté et de rencontrer de nouvelles personnes. Si vous ne l’avez pas déjà fait, communiquez avec votre club local des 4-H ou votre Conseil provincial des 4-H ou alors peignez la ville en vert en infusant votre esprit des 4-H dans une œuvre de bienfaisance locale pour laquelle vous pouvez faire également du bénévolat.    

Devenez un mentor  
Vous n’avez pas besoin d’un grand titre ou d’un bureau de direction sophistiqué pour être un mentor auprès des jeunes dans votre région. L’encadrement des autres peut vous permettre de développer vos propres compétences en leadership, de fournir des connaissances utiles et d’aider à donner aux jeunes la possibilité de tirer profit d’expériences significatives et positives qui ont pour but de former des leaders responsables, confiants et engagés. Si vous êtes un ancien membre 4-H, revenez à vos racines et faites du mentorat par l’entremise de votre club local ou participez par l’entremise du Club 1913.

Partagez une compétence    
Maîtrisez-vous la photographie, êtes un connaisseur en planification financière ou alors savez tricoter tout un bonnet? Donnez en retour en partageant une compétence. De nombreux clubs 4-H, centres communautaires et résidences pour aînés sont toujours à l’affût de professionnels talentueux à l’échelle locale pour partager leurs connaissances et transmettre leurs compétences.  

Rendez hommage aux bénévoles  
Il y a de nombreuses façons de répandre sa reconnaissance et il n’est plus un secret que les bénévoles constituent le moteur des 4-H au Canada. Lorsque vous proposez la candidature de votre animateur bénévole pour le Prix annuel de l’animateur bénévole national, vous leur offrez la chance de remporter un voyage au Sommet du réseau mondial des 4-H où plus de 600 membres 4-H provenant de partout dans le monde leur rendront hommage pour leurs contributions exemplaires au mouvement 4-H au Canada. 

Faites fructifier votre contribution 
Ratissez les feuilles ou pelletez la neige pour votre voisin en faisant le travail en double. Préparez à souper pour une personne qui est malade. Aidez un voisin âgé à faire de petites réparations autour de sa propriété. Quel que soit le geste, consacrez vos habiletés, votre temps et vos efforts afin d’aider à améliorer la journée d’une autre personne.      

Don
Faites un don au fonds de dotation de la Fondation des 4-H du Canada pour faire en sorte que l’héritage des 4-H du Canada soit transmis aux générations futures, leur permettant ainsi d’utiliser leur tête, leur cœur, leurs mains et leur santé pour faire bouger les choses dans leurs communautés, dans leur pays et ailleurs dans le monde.

6 Ways to Give Back this Holiday

This holiday season we are inviting you to celebrate your 4-H roots, make a positive impact in your community and show the world what 4-H means to you!

Need help getting started? Here are some ways you can make a positive impact in your community this holiday season:

Volunteer
Volunteering is a great way to help others, celebrate your community and to meet new people. If you haven’t already, connect with your local 4-H Club or 4-H Provincial Council or paint the town green by bringing your 4-H spirit to a local charity you can also volunteer for.  

Become a Mentor
You don’t need a big title or a fancy corner office to be a mentor to youth in your area. Mentoring others can grow your own leadership skills, provide useful insight and help give youth the opportunity to enjoy meaningful, positive experiences that build confident, caring and responsible leaders. If you’re a 4-H alumni, get back to your roots and mentor through your local club or get involved through Club 1913.

Share a Skill
Are you a master at photography, well versed in financial planning or can knit one heck of a toque? Give back by sharing a skill. Many 4-H Clubs, community centres and senior residences are always looking for local talented professionals to share knowledge and transfer skills.

Recognize and Celebrate Volunteers
There are many ways to spread good cheer and it’s no secret that volunteers are the lifeblood of 4-H in Canada. When you nominate your volunteer leader for the National Volunteer Leader of the Year Award, you give them a chance to win a trip to the Global 4-H Network Summit where they will be celebrated by over 600 4-H’ers from around the world for their exemplary contributions to the 4-H movement in Canada.

Pay it Forward
Rake leaves or shovel snow for your neighbour pulling double shifts. Make dinner for someone who is sick. Help an elderly neighbour with small repairs around their property. Whatever it is, let your skills, time and effort help improve someone else’s day.

Donate
Donate to the Canadian 4-H Foundation Endowment and ensure the legacy of 4-H in Canada continues for future generations so they can use their Heads, Heart, Hands and Health to make a difference in their community, in their country and around the world.

Generation Z: Harnessing the Power to Change the World

By Shannon Benner, CEO, 4-H Canada

The 4-H story in Canada began over a century ago, and the organization has grown into one of the country’s most respected youth movements - bridging generations and building deep community roots in the agricultural sector. From Canada’s east coast to its west coast, we are uniquely positioned in the agricultural community, through our well established programs and grassroots networks. We are fortunate to have many partners that support our work.

The secret of why this grassroots movement has been so successful in engaging youth is that it didn’t start as an organization or policy, it started as a fundamental belief that young people needed support to succeed both on, and off the farm. It was a belief that recognized the equal importance of building character, responsibility, confidence and empathy in addition to skill mastery.

The result of this philosophy, which can be traced to Ohio in the United States, is now a global 4-H movement of nearly 7 million young people in more than 60 countries. These are caring, responsible and contributing young people who effect change in the world around them.

We believe that 4-H youth from around the world are uniquely positioned to play an important leadership role in alleviating world hunger because of the work they already do in sustainable agriculture and food security. That is why, in the fall of 2014, over 70 4-H nations congregated in Seoul, Korea to participate in the first Global 4-H Network Summit.

The summit focused on evolving 4-H’s world class positive youth development approach, looking at drivers of growth in agriculture, addressing global issues through the youth lens and showcasing 4-H programming from around the world. One of the major outcomes of the summit included the formation of the Global 4-H Board, which I have the privilege of chairing.  The Summit also saw as an outcome a commitment by leaders to see global 4-H membership grow to 25 million by 2025.

Recently, this diverse group of 4-H board members came together at the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair in Toronto for an in-person Global 4-H Board meeting. They used this opportunity to discuss ways to equip and empower young people to meet urgent local, national, and global issues, including sustainable agriculture and food security.

The global 4-H community also formally asked 4-H Canada to be the host of the next Global Summit in July of 2017. 4-H Canada’s Board of Directors had passed a motion the day before to approve this request. 4-H Leaders and members from around the world will join us in Ottawa for a celebration of Positive Youth Development.

Convening the international 4-H community at events like the global board meeting and the highly anticipated 4-H Global Summit is invaluable to strengthening the 4-H movement and empowering youth. 

Our current and future youth members, who belong to generation Z, have the potential to create innovative and world-changing solutions to the biggest challenges we face in as a planet. We need to tap into this potential, particularly as we have the advantage of being a global youth organization. The skills that our youth are developing today are essential to solving the world’s problems. 4-H can and must support youth in this journey.

4-H Around the World Image

4-H Around the World

  • 4-H is one of the largest youth organizations in the world.
  • Independent 4-H programs can be found in all corners of the globe—from North and South America to Africa to Asia.
  • There are over 70 independent, country-led 4-H programs around the world.
  • Worldwide, there are nearly 7 million 4-H’ers. 

 

 

Paul Larmer welcomes 4-H Global Board Summit Delegates

Paul Larmer, Chief Executive Officer at Semex Alliance and President and Chairman of the Board for the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair. For more photos from the 4-H Global Board meeting visit our flickr page.

Thinking in Pictures: How Changing Our Thought Process Can Change the World Around Us

(l-r) Michael Congdon, Erica Jackson, Temple Grandin, Kelsey Morehouse

Most of us have experienced situations where words just aren’t enough. Sometimes it’s a feeling beyond description or it could be something you don’t know how to explain.  Well, have you ever heard the expression, “a picture is worth a thousand words?” Sometimes an image is the most effective way to express a thought or event. This is the way Dr. Temple Grandin, a renowned animal behaviourist, explains the way she thinks all the time in her efforts to improve how we handle livestock.

Dr. Grandin is a professor of animal sciences at Colorado State University, and on May 8 I had the honor to meet her at a fundraiser for 4-H Nova Scotia, held at Dalhousie University’s Faculty of Agriculture in Truro, Nova Scotia, where she spoke on reducing stress during animal handling. One of the messages she emphasized in her talk was, “don’t let bad become normal.” Bad stockmanship, as Dr. Grandin mentioned, is one of the easiest things to address in reducing stress in animals.

Another way to reduce stress in animals, whether it be cattle, horses, pigs or even sheep, is to acclimatize them to both people and objects in a positive way. This type of effort helps to ensure we have calmer livestock, which in turn is proven to promote better growth and longevity, better conception rates and overall improved productiveness.

Thinking Outside the Box and Inside the Corral

The improper use of prodding and persuading tools, and the associated stress to livestock in slaughterhouses, has been the focus of Dr. Grandin’s career. Ultimately, the rough handling of cattle and pigs in slaughterhouses produces tough beef and pale pork, neither of which are desirable meats. She specifically talked about electric prods never being used as a primary prod in persuading the movement and behaviour of livestock in the slaughterhouse.

Dr. Grandin is known also for how she completely redesigned the design and operation of stockyards, corrals and chutes based on what she observed as a measurable correlation between stress and productivity. Dr. Grandin’s observation that animals feel more comfortable when they are looping back in the direction from which they first came became a picture of how to reduce stress levels in livestock. Her new semi-circular corral design, coupled with the herd mentality of cattle, meant that stockyards could only coral smaller groups of animals at a time, but the results were clear, with lower animal stress and mortality rates in chutes and higher quality of animal products.

What You See Isn’t Always What You Get: Defining Your Own Success Story

I’ve spoken a lot about what Dr. Temple Grandin has done for the livestock industry, but, as I’m sure many of you have noticed, I haven’t mentioned one of the biggest things in Dr. Grandin’s life. Yes, you guessed it: her autism. There’s a reason for this. 

At the end of her talk, Dr. Grandin said that, “growing up, I wanted an identity other than just ‘being autistic’.” I was so inspired by this – that Dr. Grandin redefined the way she wanted to be seen by figuring out what was unique and special about her and using it to make a difference. 

That brings me back to the idea behind this post; Dr. Grandin explained how growing up she found it more difficult to communicate with words than other people. She found that sensory learning and communication was the most efficient way to portray her thoughts or, as she put it, “my mind works like Google for images. You put in a key word; it brings up pictures.” Throughout her time at school and through working with animals, Dr. Grandin realized that her way of “thinking in pictures” was how animals thought as well because animals physically can’t use words. This has been the basis for her extraordinary work with livestock and it is a lesson we can all take back to how we deal with our own animals. 

The fundraiser sold over 250 tickets and appealed to a wide audience filled with people from different backgrounds, including a significant number who, just like Dr. Grandin, have autism or another form of disability. 

Dr. Temple Grandin’s is an inspiration to many people in the agricultural industry, as well as the autism community, and her successes make her a role model for everyone. Her way of sensory thinking has allowed her to accomplish near-impossible feats with flying colors.  And who knows? Maybe this unconventional way of thinking could be the key to your being as influential, successful and inspirational as Dr. Grandin!

Cracking Eggs and Changing Lives

Cameron Choquette visits Earth Rangers during 2015 4-H Canada Members Forum

Having just returned back from the 4-H Member’s Forum in Toronto, ON I can recall my very first conference last year. I was selected to go to the 2013 Members Conference as a delegate from Saskatchewan and I was quite nervous. For people who know me I am a rather outgoing person, but my very first trip without my parents was a daunting task. 

I remember walking into the conference scared out of my wits at the thought of meeting new people and being forced to participate. I didn’t want to talk to anyone or do anything because I was afraid of people judging me. As I slowly went through each day I grew out of my “shell” and the egg was cracked. Once I knew how respectful and trustworthy 4-H’ers were - I let loose and did everything I could to enjoy the conference. 

That is what 4-H does, it cracks the eggs of young people and it changes their life. For me, 4-H has changed my life in the 12 years that I have been involved in the program. From public speaking to meeting skills, I can proudly say that I am a responsible citizen because of what 4-H does for me and for youth across the globe. 

The 2014 Members Forum was one for the record books. Every delegate had so much fun and I even got to witness people having their “eggs” cracked. The national trips and exchanges that are offered through 4-H Canada give young people a respectful environment in which they can express themselves wholeheartedly without the fear of judgement. This environment challenges delegates and chaperones alike to come out of their shell and try new things that will change their life. 

When I go to conferences I always make sure to remember every delegate’s name. I can brag and say that I knew the names of all 82 delegates from across Canada at this year’s Members Forum. 4-H is in the business of “Cracking Eggs and Changing Lives” as we continue to challenge our members and leaders to try new things and explore the endless opportunities that 4-H has to offer. 

All of the things that 4-H does for each member, leader, and volunteer changes their life in some way or another. The people involved in the program can certainly attest to that statement. I look forward to attending many more conferences, seminars, and meetings that are organized by 4-H because then I get to see more eggs being cracked and more lives being changed. 

4-H changes lives through positive youth development through our motto “Learn to Do by Doing” and we are certainly proud that over 26,000 members across Canada have the opportunity to change their life through the best youth organization in our great country. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please feel free to contact 4-H Canada or myself. 

All the best, 

Cameron Choquette 
4-H Saskatchewan Youth Advisory Committee Member 

Subscribe to RSS - Positive Youth Development