Texas 4-H awards grants to clubs in counties affected by Hurricane Harvey

Almost $125,000 provided for rebuilding 4-H clubs, communities

Contacts: Dr. Toby Lepley, 979-845-1212, toby.lepley@ag.tamu.edu

Sarah Hamm, 979-845-1213, sarah.hamm@ag.tamu.edu

Dr. Courtney Dodd, 979-845-1211, cfdodd@ag.tamu.edu

COLLEGE STATION — The Texas 4-H Youth Development Program and Texas 4-H Youth Development Foundation have collaborated to award 28 grants totaling $124,674 toward the support of efforts by 4-H clubs in counties affected by Hurricane Harvey.

“The Texas 4-H Youth Development Program and the Texas 4-H Youth Development Foundation have seen the ultimate caring and outpouring of support through the #4HSupportsTexas Hurricane Harvey campaign,” said Dr. Toby Lepley, state 4-H youth development specialist, College Station.

Lepley said grants were provided through donations made by individuals, other 4-H clubs and groups, businesses and other organizations throughout Texas and the U.S. Clubs seeking funding had to submit an application in accordance with specific guidelines.

“Guidelines included that funds would have to be used for the purpose of rebuilding a 4-H county, club or group — or used for a service project that helps the overall community in which the 4-H organization was located,” he said. “Funds could not be used for personal gain or use, to purchase equipment or supplies the club didn’t have before the hurricane, or to buy livestock. The grants were only awarded to a chartered Texas 4-H club or group.”

As stewards of the funds collected, Lepley said the foundation is committed to awarding 100 percent of the funds collected to 4-H clubs and groups affected by Hurricane Harvey and working to rebuild their clubs, county 4-H programs and communities.

“The support we have received from our 4-H family across the county has been truly remarkable,” said Sarah Hamm, executive director of the Texas 4-H Youth Development Foundation, College Station. “Funds poured in from 37 states from individuals and 4-H clubs through bake sales, livestock auctions, walk-a-thons and numerous other efforts. These efforts, as well as the generosity shown by our friends at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, exemplify how our nation and state come together in times of tragedy.”

Dr. Courtney Dodd, Texas 4-H Youth Development Program leader and assistant agency director, College Station, said many 4-H members and adult volunteers whose own lives had been affected by Hurricane Harvey immediately pitched in to help others in their communities.

“Many 4-H’er families had their homes or businesses damaged and their lives disrupted by Hurricane Harvey,” Dodd said. “But their desire to help others and serve their communities, which are cornerstones of the 4-H program, led them to help others find refuge and salvage their belongings, clean debris from their property, assist at community shelters, find refuge and food for displaced pets and livestock, and perform many other community services.”

Through the generosity of other 4-H members, donors and supporters, funds are now available for projects to help 4-H clubs and communities get back on their feet after the hurricane.

“Many of these projects will again be efforts by 4-H members and adult volunteers to help others in need,” she said.

The 4-H clubs receiving grants, the grant amount and a brief description of how the funds will be used include:

Aransas County:

— Aransas County 4-H, $3,000 to repair damage to the area shooting range used by Aransas County Sheriff’s Department and the Rockport and Fulton police departments. Also $2,000 for

replacement equipment for the club.

— Rockport-Fulton Heritage Club, $3,000 to replace the club’s computer, camera and archery equipment – all lost during the hurricane.

— Odyssey 4-H, $10,000 to replace the outdoor classroom and the 4-H Garden at the Odyssey after-school program.

— Aransas County 4-H County Council, $650 to purchase a new sign with AgriLife Extension and 4-H logos. Also $1,850 for 4-H member participation fees.

Chambers County:

— West Chambers 4-H Club, $2,000 to be used for 4-H member participation fees and club-supported service projects to help rebuild the community.

— Chambers County 4-H Shooting Team, $1,000 to be used for 4-H member participation fees and various club-supported service projects to help rebuild the community.

— Barbers Hill 4-H Shooting Club, $1,000 for a new motor and trap machine repair.

— Barbers Hill 4-H Club, $2,200 for member participation fees and various club-supported service projects to help rebuild the community.

— Mid-Chambers 4-H Club, $1,500 for member participation fees and various club-supported service projects to help rebuild the community.

Galveston County:

— Dickinson 4-H, $1,000 to be used to replace flood-damaged Junior Master Gardener program materials for the newly created 4-H Harvey Healing Garden for horticulture education.

— Galveston County 4-H Council, $1,000 for 4-H members participation fees and adult volunteer application fees.

Harris County:

— Harris County 4-H Council/Harris County 4-H CEO Group, $5,000 to replace equipment and supplies related to food and nutrition, photography, robotics, and clothing and textiles projects stored at the AgriLife Extension office in Harris County, which was damaged or destroyed by more than 8 feet of floodwaters.

— North Houston 4-H, $470 to be used for 4-H members participation fees.

Jackson County:

— La Ward 4-H Shooting Sports, $7,000 to repair the roof and replace sheetrock, ceiling tiles and lights in the Jackson County LaWard Shooting Sports facility.

Jefferson County:

— Amelia 4-H Club, $1,000 to replace club supplies such as flags and banners as well as teaching and storyboard project supplies.

— Jefferson County 4-H, $6,000 for 4-H member participation fees and adult volunteer application fees.

— Mid-Jefferson County 4-H, $254 to replace the club’s flags and gavel, plus cover rental fees for a temporary location at which to hold monthly meetings.

Polk County:

— Polk 4-H Adult Leaders Association, $3,000 to purchase a variety of life vests to be distributed to all 10 of the county’s volunteer fire departments for life-saving efforts.

Refugio County:

— Livestock Judging Club, $2,700 to help replace lost landscaping and make decorations for the club’s doors.

— Brushpoppers 4-H Club, $5,500 to buy trees, plants and shrubs lost by a Presbyterian church and replace damaged landscaping at a club-adopted rehab/nursing facility.

— Tivoli Roughriders, $9,200 to continue the club’s Christmas event, which provides games, entertainment and gifts to those less fortunate. Also $750 for 4-H member participation fees.

— Refugio County 4-H Council, $50,000 to help support the Refugio County Fair Board and Refugio County Commissioners Court in rebuilding the county fairgrounds, which were destroyed during the hurricane.

Walker County:

— Walker County 4-H Dog Club, $3,600 to help buy extra-large wire kennels to donate to the Animal Issues Committee for temporary animal sheltering.

“We hope these funds not only help rebuild our 4-H communities impacted by the hurricane, but also help strengthen them in their effort to make the best better,” Hamm said.

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