Preparing Youth for Success

4-H is a non-formal educational, youth development program offered to individuals age 5 and in kindergarten to age 19. Ohio 4-H youth development reaches more than 240,000 youth each year – helping kids “learn by doing” through hands-on activities.

All 4-H programs focus on active involvement and quality experiences which stimulate lifelong learning of values and skills. 4-H members learn valuable lessons in leadership, communication and collaboration while increasing their knowledge in math, science, technology and a variety of other topics.

4-H creates fun while learning in a variety of ways. Kids can participate in 4-H through community clubs, camps, in-school and after-school activities, and summer programs. They increase their self-confidence and personal life skills while learning about specific subjects - anything from animals or computers to public speaking, cooking, art, gardening and environmental sciences, just to name a few project topics.

The Ross County 4-H Youth Development Program serves almost 1,468 youth through community clubs, 2,000 youth in school programs, and nearly 500 youth in camp activities with the assistance of more than 400 adult and teen volunteers.  Let us help you make the connection with positive youth development opportunities in Ross county!

Please give us a call at 740-702-3200 or drop us an email if you have questions or if we can be of assistance in any way.

KatieRyan Kline

Katie Wells                                          Ryan Kline
Extension Educator                             Extension Educator
4-H Youth Development                      4-H Youth Development and Family and Consumer Sciences

The 4-H Pledge:

I pledge. . .
My head to clearer thinking
My heart to greater loyalty
My hands to larger service
My health to better living
For my club, my community, my country and my world.

Fun Facts:

Head-1902 - A.B. Graham had the first club meeting of the Agriculture Experiment Club on January 15, 1902, in Springfield Ohio.  O.J. Kern of Illinois held the first meeting of the Farmer Boys' Experiment Club on February 22, 1902, 38 days after A.B. Grahams meeting.
Health-1908 - The 4-H emblem was designed as a three-leaf emblem.  The three H's stood for Head, Heart, and Hands.  The fourth H was added and stood for Hustle, years later the fourth H stands for Health.  In 2015, 246 4-H members, (12 from Ohio) came together to learn about health at the 2016 National Youth Summit on Healthy Living at the National 4-H Conference Center in Chevy Chase, Maryland.
Hands-1929 - Seven 4-H Club Pigs were aboard Commander Byrd's South Pole Expedition, kept aboard for breeding purposes to supply the pork needed for the expedition party during their stay in the South Pole Region.  In 2015, the most popular individual project was Market Hog with over 12,287 youth in Ohio participating, and not one of those pigs went to the South Pole!
Heart-1982 - Past Ohio 4-H Foundation Board Member and founder of Bob Evans Farms, Bob Evans was inducted into the Ohio 4-H Hall of Fame.  Once quoted as saying that the "only thing better than sausage is 4-H."  Bob Evans Farms remains as active supporter of 4-H in the state of Ohio and recently held the Be4Ag community fundraiser.

You can also learn more about all OSU Extension 4-H youth development programs at

Special Needs Accommodations

Accommodations can be made for youth with disabilities through our Winning 4-H Plan. Visit for more information and to download the request form.

Extension has been helping all Ohioans build better lives, better businesses and better communities since 1914.