Join 4-H

Embark on an exhilarating journey with 4-H, a global program captivating the hearts of nearly 6 million young people! Youth can experience 4-H through school and community clubs, in-school and after-school programs, and 4-H camps. 4-H programming focuses on the following program project areas: Agriculture and Natural Resources, Communication and the Arts, Healthy Living, Leadership and Civic Engagement, and STEM. 4-H welcomes youth from various backgrounds and passions in grades K-12 - Clover Kids (grades K-3) and 4-H Clubs (grades 4-12).

Enrolling in your county's 4-H program may involve an enrollment fee. Please contact your local County Extension Office to find out more. Financial assistance for individual enrollment fees is available through the Iowa 4-H Foundation.

Ready to start your 4-H adventure? Fill out our interest form below or contact your local County Extension Office to learn more about the endless 4-H opportunities.

Interest Form

Join Washington County 4-H

Image
4-H Grows Here

Washington County has approximately 650 youth in grades K-12 involved in 4-H.  Washington County has 18 community club options which serve 4th-12th grade youth and 10 Clover Kid clubs which serve kindergarten - 3rd grade youth.

 

So you might want to join 4-H but aren't sure where to start...

The general structure/big picture is:

  • Kids join a club. 
  • They meet with that club once a month for about an hour.  
  • They have adult volunteer leaders who will be in contact with you mostly about club events and some county 4-H news. 
  • When a club is decided, you enroll in 4hOnline database so we have all the important contact/emergency/health/permissions.   That database is v2.4honline.com.  
  • You will get information from the Extension Office almost weekly about opportunities for kids to participate in activities that are open to all of our 4-Hers - not just from one club.   

So next steps for you and your child = Check out a club to join.  Families select a club to join for many different reasons (maybe school district, fits best with schedule, volunteers you know, other members you know).  We have a few clubs in Washington County that are already closed due to high numbers, but we have several still with room for new members too!  

What clubs would work with your family's schedule?  Reach out to the leaders and see when their next club meeting is scheduled to start joining in the fun.   It is best to get that accurate meeting information directly from the club leaders in case they have special meeting plans.  

 Keep in mind:

  • We do recommend parents of new members to stay at the meetings too to hear the information.  It will be new (sometimes new from last year and, for sure, new from when possibly parents were in 4-H years ago.  😉) We like parents to stay and hear the information too, have the opportunity to ask questions and also connect with other parents.  See your child in action and also learn new ways to encourage them to get involved in the club setting. 
  • Club membership is never permanent.  If you get into a year or an age when there are friends in a different club or the meeting night no longer works with your family’s schedule, there are other clubs to join.  Or if personalities just don’t jive – every club is different based on personalities, interests, and specialties of the members and volunteers.  It is ok to shop around!

 Hooray.  Hooray.  Hooray.  We strongly believe and research even shows that 4-H is such a good place for kids to grow up!  We hope to welcome you to the #washco4h family soon! Please contact staff at the Washington County Extension Office, 319-653-4811, or washington4h@iastate.edu with other questions or to help find the right club for your family.  We look forward to hearing from you.  

 

Washington County 4-H Member in Good Standing Attendance Policy:   “Members are allowed to miss three club meetings in a 4-H year.  If a 4-Her is absent due to another Washington County 4-H activity, it is allowed and not considered an absence.  Members missing four or more meetings will be ineligible to show at the county fair as a 4-H member.”   After the second missed club meeting members will be informed, they have one absence still allowed.  This communication will come from the club leaders and the Washington County Extension Office.   Club leaders will designate club meeting dates at the start of each 4-H year.  Families should have those dates saved for 4-H club meetings.  Please plan a head.   It is best practice to communicate with leaders before an absence as courtesy to their preparations, but the absence is noted regardless of the reason or notification.   (Effective October 6, 2023 per Washington County Extension Council)

 

If you/your child requires special accommodations to participate in 4-H events/club activities/county fair, please see the complete Accommodation Request process at https://www.extension.iastate.edu/diversity/reasonable-accommodation-practices.  An Accommodation Request Form is available from that link or from the Washington County Extension Office and due no later than 30 days prior to the event or activity. Submitting a request for accommodation on shorter notice may reduce or limit county extension’s ability to implement the accommodations.