For more than 55 years, Kendall County 4-H members have participated in the state-to-state 4-H Exchange program. To offset travel costs, the youth group once again will be selling pork burgers at the Yorkville Fourth of July celebration, which is the group’s largest fundraiser each year.
“The program continues to be a success thanks to the fantastic support of our community, as well as the time and efforts of our 4-H volunteers and families,” said Linda Fitzgerald, 4-H Volunteer and Exchange Program Coordinator. “Through the 4-H Exchange program, youth make lifelong friends, try new things, and learn much from their experiences.”
Following the 2018 Yorkville Independence Day parade, Kendall County 4-H Exchange teens will be selling pork burgers, chips and drinks in the Town Square on Wednesday, July 4.
The 4-H Exchange program’s two-year cycle allows a group to visit another state, and then host that same youth group the following year.
“It’s a great way to learn about 4-H in other states, and a great way to make new friends in other Kendall County clubs and in other states,” said 4-H member Elizabeth Franzen, one of several participating local teens.
The Kendall County 4-H’ers and their families just hosted the Dauphin County, Penn., 4-H Exchange members in June, and the group spent a full day sightseeing in Chicago, stayed at Hoover Forest Preserve, and visited local attractions including Naper Settlement and Quarry Beach in Batavia. Last year, the Kendall County youth visited the Pennsylvania 4-H group, seeing Penn State University, Lake Heron, the Appalachian Trail and more.
“I loved all the time I had in the 4-H Exchange program,” said 4-H alum Emma Hill, who just participated in her last exchange. “I have learned so much about all the places I’ve gotten to travel to, and have so many great memories and pictures I’ll get to look back on and remember too. I would do it all again!”
The next 4-H Exchange cycle will start in the fall of 2019. Youth must be 13 years old to join the Exchange program and to travel. For more information, call 630-553-5823 or visit go.illinois.edu/extensiondkk.