• By April Bowman
  • Posted Thursday, March 12, 2009

Miss America Credits 4-H with Passion for Service

Miss AmericaAsk Katie Stam about her passion for community service, and she'll tell you it all started with 4-H. Long before winning her title as Miss America, Katie Stam would spend hours in 4-H performing in creative dramatics, competing at the Jackson County fair, and visiting with 4-H friends and family. It was there that she learned the values of leadership, mentorship, and community service. And like most 4-H kids, she collected blue ribbons and trophies along the way to mark her accomplishments.

Now that she's in the national spotlight, Katie is getting the message out that community service is important and rewarding. Katie's platform, Promoting Community Service and Involvement, aims to get youth involved in their own neighborhoods. Her first goal? Partnering with President Obama to expand service learning in schools nationwide.

With community service as her national platform, Katie could potentially transform the way millions of young people think about community service and 4-H. "4-H is such an advocate for community service," said Katie. "It encourages you to reach out to people in so many different ways."

Forsyth County 4-H agent, April Bowman, says that a lot of 4-H’ers perform community service as a monthly part of their 4-H club meeting. “We have 4-H club members that have adopted residents at nursing homes, planted flowers and bulbs for community beautification, helped with election campaigns and volunteered with other youth. One 4-H club even performs a monthly “talent show” of sorts at Kerner Ridge Assisted Living. Through performing community service youth learn empathy and caring for others, responsibility and many other life skills.”

To learn more about 4-H and how you or your children ages 5-18 can get involved click here, e-mail them at 4H@forsyth.cc or call them at 703-2850.

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