April, 18th, 2023
Miami, Florida – Miami-Dade 4-H is proud to announce that two teen delegates recently presented on urban agriculture at the Ignite by 4-H National Conference in Washington, D.C., from March 8th through 12th, 2023. This event explores the best 4-H offers in STEM, Agriscience, Healthy Living, and Emotional Well-Being.
The Miami-Dade 4-H teen delegates included Karol Gonzalez of Westland Hialeah Senior High School and Grace Aquino of Hialeah Gardens Senior High. The duo was accompanied by 4-H Extension Agents Kenan Bridges and Whitney Thames, who supported and guided them throughout the conference.
During the four-day event, delegates engaged in conversations with respected leaders, like U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy and polar explorer Sunniva Sorby. This opportunity engaged over 500 4-H members from around the U.S. and its territories. These teens discussed unique challenges and opportunities facing their communities.
“It was an incredible experience meeting people from all over the world,” said Karol Gonzalez, a Miami-Dade 4-H delegate.
“I enjoyed listening to the speakers and learning about other methods of hydroponic farming and healthy living.”
Traveling from a big city like Miami, where the population density is over 1,431 people per square mile, where is the city’s agriculture? The Miami-Dade 4-H teens presented their Connecting Youth in Urban Communities with Agriculture workshop. Urban agriculture is important in enhancing food security and increasing job opportunities in the community. Their workshop shared a local 4-H internship about agricultural innovations addressing such critical issues.
The local program is offered in partnership with the Miami-Dade County Public Schools Summer Youth Internship Program. The teens were awarded a scholarship by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to attend the event.
“Ignite by 4-H is a one-of-a-kind opportunity for our youth,” said Kenan Bridges, 4-H Extension Agent. “Coming from a very urban community like Miami-Dade, our teens bring a unique perspective and innovative solutions into agricultural science. We are proud of their hard work and dedication to 4-H.”
By Kenan Bridges, KenanBridges@ufl.edu.
For more information about this and other 4-H programs in Miami-Dade County, contact our Agents at 305-769-4050.
ABOUT MIAMI-DADE 4-H
4-H is the nation’s largest youth development organization. Over 230,000 members in the State of Florida help to make up the community of more than 6.5 million young people across America. 4-H is a nonformal, practical educational program for youth. Florida 4-H is the youth development program of Florida Cooperative Extension, a part of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS). 4-H provides opportunities for all youth ages 5-18.