General Info

What is 4-H?

Many people think 4-H is just for kids who live on farms or those interested in raising and selling animals – but that’s not true! Offering a diverse range of topics and interest areas, 4-H is the largest youth development organization in Michigan. In fact, each year more than 200,000 young people, ages 5-19, explore what interests and excites them as they grow with Michigan 4-H. In program areas ranging from science and technology to clothing and textiles, and so much more, 4-H provides fun, educational opportunities that empower young people with skills to lead for a lifetime and become the foundation for future success.

4-H is a community of young people across America who are learning leadership, citizenship and life skills.

What does 4-H offer?

  • For kids, 4-H offers fun learning opportunities through 4-H clubs, after-school programs, and local, state and international events and activities.
  • For older teens, 4-H offers opportunities to set goals, develop strategies to reach those goals and take leadership for sharing their skills, knowledge and talents to make their communities stronger.
  • For adults, 4-H offers research-based support and training in age-appropriate learning methods and materials to help plan activities and projects for and with young people in safe, nurturing environment

Interested in becoming a 4-H Member?

If you have previously enrolled in Michigan 4-H or already connected with a club or county staff person, visit 4-H Online to complete or update your enrollment for the current year.

If your ready to get started and are between the ages of 5 and 19 years old (Age as of January 1st) here are some things you will need to do:

  1. Decide what you want to do. 4-H offers a huge assortment of clubs and projects to choose from. 
  2. Contact the MSU Extension office in your county (Kalkaska MSUE - 231-258-3320). The 4-H Program Coordinator can connect you to existing 4-H clubs or can help you and an adult start your own!
  3. If starting your own club think of those you will invite to join you. 
  4. Learn more about 4-H. The four H's stand for head (4-H lets youth take the lead), heart (4-H helps youth build strong relationships), hands (4-H lets youth learn by doing) and health (4-H helps youth make healthy choices). 
  5. Once you selected a club you will be ready to enroll in 4-H! Enrollment is handled online through the 4-H Online system. Helpful 4-H Online registration information. 
  6. Get ready to explore, experience, and achieve in 4-H! 

What are the steps to becoming a 4-H volunteer?

Whether you want a short-term volunteer experience or a long-term role, 4-H has an opportunity for you! To become a 4-H volunteer, you can either:

  1. Contact the MSU Extension office in the county where you want to volunteer, or;
  2. Complete the steps at the Volunteer Selection Process page.

The 4-H program coordinator in the county you’ve selected will follow up with you about next steps in the Volunteer Selection Process. The Volunteer Selection Process includes an application, national and state background checks, references, an interview and online training modules. There is no charge to you as a volunteer for these background checks or the selection process.


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