- The 2021 National 4-H Week is October 3 to 9.
- As a returning Davie resident who participated in 4-H as a youth, Megann Cady is now back to working on her passion as a new 4-H Youth Development agent.
- She has big plans for the UF/IFAS Extension Broward County program.
BROWARD COUNTY, Fla. — With the coming of fall and the school year in full throttle, there is no better time to get engaged with your local 4-H program than now as the official celebration of National 4-H Week kicks off Oct. 3.
For Megann Cady, the celebration has special meaning. Cady returned home over the summer to take on the position of 4-H youth development agent for UF/IFAS Extension Broward County.
“4-H has a profound impact on my life,” she explains. “It has molded me into the person I am today and continues to shape the person I am becoming as well as the agent I strive to be.”
Cady has a special history with 4-H that she shares whenever she can.
“I originally started my journey in 4-H to travel for horse shows, but I loved the sense of community it created within our horse barn, so I kept coming back year after year to participate in the club,” she said.
That led her to becoming a Gator after she applied to UF to pursue her hopes of becoming a veterinarian. While in school she realized it was not her passion, but that education was what sparked her career goals. She obtained a bachelor’s in animal sciences from UF, followed by a master’s degree in secondary science education from Belmont University in Tennessee.
As she begins to shape the program and activities in her role as an agent, her hope is that youth and community members will see her as a connection to all that 4-H has while also serving as a place of support.
“I see myself as a liaison between youth members who are seeking to learn something new and for adult mentors seeking to provide support to their community in positive ways,” said Cady. “It is often said that it takes a village to raise a child, and 4-H can be a part of that village with its basis in positive youth development providing a safe, supportive environment for a child to develop a sense of mastery, belonging, independence and generosity.”
Cady has goals in mind intended to increase the involvement of 4-H clubs with one another through community-wide events, as well as promote 4-H’s many STEM opportunities.
First on her plate is to increase participation in 4-H for youth in Broward County.
“As the second largest county by population in Florida with 1.9 million residents, 21% of that population are youth eligible to join 4-H. 4-H offers a wide range of programs for pretty much any interest for every youth,” she explains.
Upcoming events on the calendar include:
- Trunk or Treat Open House and Club Showcase on October 29th from 5-7 p.m. at the UF/IFAS Extension Broward County Office ( 3245 College Ave, Davie, FL 33314 )
- Art in the Garden planned to begin virtually on Nov. 6th via the Broward County Extension office website (http://sfyl.ifas.ufl.edu/broward/)
How can folks get to know Cady and the programs offered?
- Website: Broward 4-H Youth Development – UF/IFAS Extension (ufl.edu)
- Facebook: UF IFAS Extension 4-H Broward County | Facebook
- Instagram: Broward County 4-H (@browardcounty4h) • Instagram photos and videos
- Twitter: UF/IFAS Broward County 4-H Youth Development (@browardcounty4h) / Twitter
By: Lourdes Mederos
The mission of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) is to develop knowledge relevant to agricultural, human and natural resources and to make that knowledge available to sustain and enhance the quality of human life. With more than a dozen research facilities, 67 county Extension offices, and award-winning students and faculty in the UF College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, UF/IFAS brings science-based solutions to the state’s agricultural and natural resources industries, and all Florida residents.
ifas.ufl.edu | @UF_IFAS
4-H is the youth development program of the land-grant university system and Cooperative Extension System. The program provides hands-on educational programs and experiences for youth ages 5 to 18 with the objective of developing them as individuals, and as responsible and productive citizens. In Florida, 4-H is administered by University of Florida/IFAS Extension and Florida A&M University and serves approximately 200,000 youth annually. Learn more at florida4h.org.