My Health to better living-
As a 4-H Professional, it is imperative that we teach youth about each of the four h’s and what they represent. We spend a great deal of time focusing on teaching youth to master projects areas, be good citizens, and give back to others. Too often, we fail to teach youth about the 4th H, which represents health. One of the main objectives of Initiative 7 from the UF/ IFAS Extension Road Map seeks to empower families to lead healthy lifestyles. In order to support Initiative 7, Highlands 4-H now participates in The 4th H for Health Challenge. This nation wide challenge is a 4-H initiative to promote healthy living and is open to all 4-H youth.
This program is fun and easy to implement into monthly 4-H club meetings. Furthermore, the challenge encourages families to naturally make healthier decisions. In order to complete the challenge, clubs have to offer fruits or vegetables as a snack at three meetings, serve water as their main beverage at six meetings, and add 15 minutes of physical activity at nine meetings. To encourage participation in physical activities, Highlands County 4-H offers several county wide activities such as the 4-H Kickball Kickoff, Eat4-Health Athletic Conditioning Course, Tic Tac Toe Relay Races, Walmart Foundation Healthy Habits program, Smoothie Bike demonstrations, and the state wide March4-Health Virtual 5K. Clubs that successfully complete all of the components of the challenge receive recognition at the annual 4-H awards banquet.
Additionally, an effective club meeting is made up of three parts; business, education, and recreation. As a result, implementing the 4th H for Health Challenge, allows clubs to quickly cover both the education and recreation components. Club leaders have the ability to check out 4th H for Health agility kits and recreation equipment from the Highlands County 4-H office to use at their club meetings. Healthy lifestyle choices is a critical life skill that 4-H teaches youth. By providing the 4th H for Health Challenge we are able to set youth on a path towards making healthier decisions, leading healthier lifestyles, and reducing preventable lifestyle related illness and disease.
For more information about Healthy Living programs being offered by Florida 4-H visit: