On March 28-29, four Ralls County girls, Halynna Yager and Rebecca Moore, of Vandalia’s Brice Happy Hustlers; Sydnee Brothers, of Center’s Wise Guys; and Jaylyn Hudelson, of New London’s Rocky Point 4-H Club, were among the 342 people attending the 2015 State 4-H Teen Conference, at the University of Missouri and the Holiday Inn Executive Center. The delegates, ages 11-13, attended workshops to develop belonging, generosity, and mastery of new skills, three of the 4-H program’s four “essential elements.”
The fourth is independence, and for many delegates, Teen Conference is the first big overnight trip away from home.
Teen Conference is led by the State 4-H Council, a group of older teens elected annually by their peers, who work for months to plan this annual event as representatives of 4-H.
“The state council members develop leadership skills through this experience as well,” said DeeDee Martin, Ralls County 4-H YPA (Youth Program Assistant) for MU Extension, “and the younger delegates see them as role models while they grow their own leadership skills.”
Delegates learned about other cultures, robotics, and appreciation for our veterans, leadership, and the importance of being oneself.
Teen Conference delegates were surprised on the last morning by Marshall, the brave celebrity canine who inspired the film “Marshall the Miracle Dog.” As the youth learned about bullying prevention, Marshall wandered through the audience to meet everyone himself.
Missouri 4-H is open to all children ages 5-18. For more information, visit 4h.missouri.edu or contact your local MU Extension Center at 573-985-3911.