Six individuals received the honour
By Diego Flammini
Six Ontario 4-H leaders received an award recognizing their volunteer efforts and dedication to their local 4-H clubs.
4-H Ontario’s Outstanding New Club Leader Award honours volunteers who are new to 4-H and have been leaders for fewer than three years. The organization presents one award per region.
“We are very proud to honour these amazing individuals for their contributions to the 4-H program,” Evelyn Chambers, senior manager of volunteer and community engagement, said in a statement. “Their efforts in their 4-H clubs and communities truly embody what it means to be a 4-Her.”
Rob Perigo from the Sudbury 4-H Association is Region 1’s award recipient.
“I was shocked when I found out I won,” he told Farms.com. “I never thought I’d be up for any award, I was just doing what I could to help the kids in the community.”
Growing up in Collingwood, Ont., Perigo didn’t have any involvement with 4-H as a child. He started to volunteer with the organization as an adult after he met his wife, Crystal, who had previous experience with 4-H.
His time with the organization has seen him lead nine projects, tend to the community garden, and engage in conversations with other members.
“I love to talk to each kid and find out what makes them tick,” he said. “Everyone has different abilities and different ways of learning, and it’s such a good feeling when they learn those things about themselves.”
A misconception exists that 4-H is only geared towards kids from rural communities.
In 2013, about 13 per cent of 4-H Ontario members were from urban communities.
All kids should consider getting involved with 4-H because of the lasting effects the organization can have on a young person, Perigo said.
“Absolutely do it,” he said. “You’ll learn so many skills that will help you grow both professionally and personally. It’s a great way to develop leadership skills and I would encourage anyone to seek out their local 4-H club to get more information about it.”
The other winners are:
- Harrietta Bretzler from Region 2 representing the Stormont 4-H Association
- Nadia Goodfellow from Region 3 from the Lennox & Addington 4-H Association
- Emily Summerhayes from Region 4 of the Brant 4-H Association
- Jeff Bechard of Region 5 from the Grey 4-H Association
- Alex Richardson from Region 6 representing the Chatham-Kent 4-H Association
Farms.com extends its congratulations to all the winners!