4-H is a community of young people across America who are learning leadership, citizenship and life skills. 4-H is about having fun, learning, exploring and discovering. In 4-H, young people make new friends, develop new skills, become leaders and help shape their communities. About 50,000 Wisconsin youth are enrolled members of 4-H clubs in Wisconsin. Another 195,000 Wisconsin youth get involved in 4-H through special educational opportunities at school, in after school programs, or at neighborhood or youth centers. These youth live in cities, suburbs, small towns and rural communities.
4-H gives them a chance to pursue their own interests - from photography to computers, from building rockets to raising sheep. A list of 4-H projects is available online. They go places - to camp, to state and national conferences, even to other countries on 4-H exchange programs. They learn to be leaders and active citizens.
In 4-H clubs, they serve as officers and learn to conduct meetings, handle club funds, and facilitate group decision-making. In a growing number of communities, 4-H youth serve as youth representatives in municipal or county government or as members of Teen Courts. They give back to their communities. 4-H members get involved in volunteer projects to protect the environment, mentor younger children and help people who are less fortunate.
4-H experiences are designed to address the four essential elements of positive youth development: Belonging, Mastery, Generosity and Independence.
You can join a Dane County 4-H club and elect projects if you are in grade 3 through age 19. Clubs even accept members in kindergarten, first and second grades in a special level called the Cloverbud program.
To join a 4-H club, here’s what you need to do:
- First, select a 4-H club from the list on this page. You will see a name and phone number for that club’s Organizational Leader.
- Next, call that Organizational Leader and find out more information about the club and its members. Most 4-H members join in the fall, but new members can join at any time.
- Finally, attend the 4-H club meeting with your parents, select your projects and get ready to discover what 4-H is all about!