4-H’ers are three times more likely to contribute to their communities than youths not participating in 4-H, according to a study by Tufts University.The study shows that 4-H’ers thrive through the health and science education and career preparation they receive through 4-H programming. Compared to non-4-H youths, 4-H’ers spend more hours exercising or being physically active. 4-H’ers also have higher educational achievement and higher motivation for future education, reporting better grades and an elevated level of engagement at school.Volunteering in their communitiesThe structured learning, encouragement and adult mentoring that young people receive through 4-H plays a vital role in helping them actively contribute to their communities, the study said. “The findings presented in the Tufts study are evidence that the young people who are involved in 4-H are better equipped to lead more productive and altruistic lives,” said Donald T. Floyd, Jr., president and CEO of National 4-H Council. “Although 4-H has been the largest youth development program in the nation for more than 100 years, many people are unaware of the incredible and uncommon commitment of 4-H’ers to break through obstacles, tackle big problems and make measurable contributions where they live.”Students across the nation surveyedOfficially named the 4-H Study of Positive Youth Development, the Tufts research is an on-going study that started in 2001 with support from the National 4-H Council. Richard Lerner, a youth development scholar, works with researchers at the Institute for Applied Research in Youth Development at Tufts University to conduct the study. Youths are measured in “waves” across time which compared those that participate in 4-H to those that do not. The study is currently in wave seven. The 6,885 adolescents surveyed are racially and geographically diverse, representing 45 states.In Georgia, 4-H’ers are leading issues in their towns, counties and state. Health walks, performing arts and animal savingIn Columbia County, Ga., Ryan Rose’s commitment to learning about heart disease in women led to a community-wide walk and educational program, a school-wide “Wear Red” day and donations to the American Heart Association. Through his 4-H project, Rose learned about heart disease and sought to teach others. From middle school 4-H meetings to links on his high school’s website, Rose worked to involve his community in understanding and working to prevent heart disease in women in his county.Mary Allison Lathem combines her love for performing with helping children in Covington, Ga. She formed a community performing arts club and offered programs for at-risk youths visiting the Washington Street Community Center. Thirty-five children in the community center’s after-school program now meet weekly to explore dance, music, acting, puppetry and costuming. Lathem’s efforts and community connections led to club members attending performances of the Nutcracker and the Wizard of Oz, the first live performances most of the students had seen. Local teachers say students in the performing arts club have improved performance and the director of the county’s after-school programs uses the program as a model for all after-school programs to incorporate performing arts.In Georgia, 62 percent of animals in shelters are euthanized each year. After learning that her hometown has an even higher rate, Putnam County 4-H’er Eryn Parker sought to find a solution. Partnering with Petfinders, a national website, Parker photographed animals and posted descriptions to help find the strays new homes. She linked the information to the Putnam County Animal Control Facebook page and posted flyers in the community. With the help of her fellow 4-H’ers, Parker’s work increased the adoption rate of animals from Putnam County Animal Control by 42 percent.The Georgia 4-H program is carried out by University of Georgia staff in counties across the state. To connect with your local 4-H program, call 1-800-ASK-UGA1 or visit the website georgia4h.org.
Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York People are buzzing about the upcoming show that some are calling “the greatest folk concert Long Island has seen in decades!”On Nov. 20, the Hillwood Recital Hall at the Tilles Center for the Performing Arts on the Brookville campus of LIU Post will host “David Amram’s 84th Birthday Concert: Remembering Pete Seeger.”Not only is it a birthday bash for a world-renowned artist and a musical celebration of perhaps one of the world’s most influential folk artists, it’s also a benefit for the nonprofit Gold Coast Arts Center, an organization dedicated to supporting and promoting the arts through education, exhibition, performance and outreach—something that Amram has done throughout his own long career.Topping the bill is the octogenarian birthday boy himself, David Amram, and his quintet, featuring Kevin Twigg, Rene Hart, Robbie Winterhawk and Adam Amram. Also scheduled to appear are Amram’s close compatriots who’ve also shared the stage over the years with the late, great Pete Seeger, including Peter Yarrow (of Peter, Paul and Mary fame), Tom Chapin, Holly Near, Guy Davis, Garland Jeffreys, Kim & Reggie Harris, Joel Rafael, The Amigos, The Chapin Sisters, Bethany & Rufus and the Connecticut State Troubadour Kristen Graves.“This family of musicians feels honored to mark David Amram’s 84th birthday with a celebration of the life of our mutual friend, Pete Seeger,” said Rafael on his website, adding that they still feel Seeger’s presence today.Seeger was 94 when he died in January of this year.“We credit Pete as a great organizer and musician who blazed a path for so many by indelibly linking his music and activism,” said Rafael. “We thank him for bringing songs like ‘Guantanamera’ and ‘Wimoweh’ to the United States; for turning the traditional song, ‘I Will Overcome,’ into ‘We Shall Overcome,’ and teaching it to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Pete Seeger brought American Folk Music into the homes of millions of Americans and those in countless countries around the world.”David Amram (left) performing with the late, great Pete Seeger (Photo courtesy of Econosmith.com)David Amram is another trailblazer, whose musical journey as a composer, conductor, multi-instrumentalist and author has bridged classical, jazz and world music. He’s performed with Dizzy Gillespie, Willie Nelson, Leonard Bernstein, Tito Puente, Odetta, Allen Ginsberg, Nina Simone, Betty Carter and even Jack Kerouac, to name a few of the diverse talents with whom he’s performed for seven decades and counting.Read about Jeck Kerouac’s time on Long IslandWho but Amram can claim Charlie Parker, Thelonious Monk, Miles Davis, Aaron Copland, Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning as some of the influential mentors that helped him find his unique path? He continues to travel the world as a composer, conductor, soloist, bandleader, visiting scholar and narrator fluent in five languages. But on Nov. 20, he’ll be coming to Long Island’s North Shore: 720 Northern Blvd., Brookville, to be exact. The tantalizing evening kicks off at 7 p.m. at the Tilles Center for the Performing Arts. It promises to be a truly legendary night of great music.The Gold Coast Arts Center is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting and supporting the arts through education, exhibition, performance and outreach. For more than 20 years, they have been bringing the arts to tens of thousands of people in our area free of charge. They also sponsor artist-in-residencies at schools, after-school art programs, special assemblies, teacher-training workshops, as well as parent-child workshops to students, senior citizens, teachers and others in underserved communities throughout our region. An affiliate of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts: Partners in Education Program and the National Gallery of Art, the Gold Coast Arts Center has also sponsored the Gold Coast International Film Festival, now in its fourth year, which has furthered their outreach.Tickets went on sale Oct. 2, for $55 in advance, and can be purchased by visiting movementmusicrecords.com. For an additional $45, concertgoers can meet and greet the performers at a special VIP event backstage.Hillwood Recital Hall at the Tilles Center for the Performing Arts, Long Island University at CW Post (aka LIU Post), 720 Northern Blvd, Brookville. 516-299-2752. For more information about this legendary gig, visit tillescenter.org. To learn more about the Gold Coast Arts Center, go to goldcoastarts.org.