Remember, Growing Up Is Hard

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Our 4-H members recently returned from a three-day-two-night trip to Raleigh as part of 4-H NC Citizenship Focus. It is a program that gives a front seat to how government works. They attended workshops, visited the legislature, and had the opportunity to learn about government, up close and personal, in a way many youth do not. This event also marked our first in-person state event since 2019. It was an opportunity unlike any other for our youth.

With that being said, it was hard not to notice a few changes. Our overall numbers were down for attendance. That seems to be due to the fact we are missing those 15- and 16-year-olds in our programs. Not just here but across the state. When you turn 14 in 4-H there is a new world of opportunities open to you to attend overnight events – events that allow you to make friends across the state, events that allow you to learn life skills and gain confidence. Even though our programs went virtual over the last two years, which was amazing, we must admit it wasn’t exactly the same.

So for those 14-18-year-olds out there, and parents of these teens, this is for you. We know growing up is tough. We realize for the last two years you have been with family and communicating virtually, – we get that, we have all been there. We also know, maybe, you are not quite as sure of yourself as you might otherwise be, because you haven’t been around folks much to practice some of those introduction, conversation, and general socializing skills. I have to admit my first time with a group of folks was a little unnerving, tiring, and I needed some reminders of social graces to ease back into the world. It’s ok, – we are here to help in a fun, practical way that will make you feel more confident in yourself as you ease back into the world.

Want to see what we have to offer? Well check us out. You can join 4-H by going to 4-H Online to register for our program. It’s free and open to all youth ages 5-18. Want to check out our programs? Download our app from your app store (4-H Now), and when you open it select Robeson County 4-H. There you can see our calendar of upcoming events, read about our past events on our blog, check out our photos, see the social media, and even register for upcoming programs. If you have other questions, please feel free to email myself or Wendy Maynor, and we would be happy to help you. If you want to just see what we are up to this summer and feel good about the opportunities available for our youth, follow us on Facebook at N.C. Cooperative Extension, Robeson County Center. You will be amazed at what our youth can do. After all, next year your teen 4-H member might be having a conversation with Representative Brenden Jones, creating memories for a lifetime, and gaining life skills without even realizing it; 4-H is making growing up just a little bit easier.

For more information, please contact Shea Ann DeJarnette, 4-H Youth Development with North Carolina Cooperative Extension, Robeson County Center, at 671-3276, by E-mail at