4-H Volunteer Profile: Doug Craven

In an effort to highlight the many different volunteer opportunities 4-H has to offer, the 4-H Volunteer Profile series will highlight a few of the many wonderful people who give their time to Michigan 4-H.

November 19, 2014 - Author: Julie Ruemenapp

In an effort to highlight the many different volunteer opportunities 4-H has to offer, the 4-H Volunteer Profile series will highlight a few of the many wonderful people who give their time to Michigan 4-H. 

Volunteer name: Doug Craven
Location of volunteer service: Emmet County
Duration of volunteer service: 3 years

What programs do you volunteer with?
Primarily with the 4-H swine project, but I also assist with natural resource projects.

What is your volunteer role with Michigan 4-H?
I am a 4-H parent in the club and volunteer my time to assist with the swine project.

Why did you decide to become a 4-H volunteer?
I was involved in FFA in Gratiot County as a youth and I wanted to give my sons a similar experience so we joined 4-H as family. They participate as youth 4-H members and I give my time to help them and other 4-H’ers involved in the swine project area.  As a member of the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa tribe, I would like to see more tribe members become involved in 4-H as well.

What are some of the rewards you have experienced as a 4-H volunteer?
I see youth that mature through the project. They become more hands on in the swine project and develop important life skills by figuring out the costs and how much feed their animal needs. I also enjoy interacting with the kids. I help youth practice for the fair by holding mock judging practices and work with the kids on how to thank their buyers after the sale.

What are some of the life skills you teach youth as a 4-H volunteer?
I think responsibility is one of the main things the kids learn. They have to figure out how much to feed the pigs, how much it will cost and learn take care of their own animal. Through 4-H, they get the experience of raising a market animal and that isn’t an opportunity all kids can get.

What is your favorite memory from your 4-H volunteer experience?
My favorite experience is going with the 4-H’ers  to pick out their pigs for the upcoming season -- there is so much enthusiasm! There are so many different options at that point in the project and  everyone is hoping their pig could be the grand champion or do well at fair.

What would you say to someone who was considering becoming a 4-H volunteer?
It takes volunteers to run a 4-H club and keep youth interested, so there’s a big need for volunteers. Consider becoming one in your community!

 Thank you Doug for your years of service as a 4-H volunteer! Visit the volunteers page to learn more about becoming a 4-H volunteer yourself or visit the swine or natural resources sections to learn more about these 4-H project areas.

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