About the 4-H Program in Bergen and Passaic Counties

What we do

In 2008, Bergen County 4-H teens helped to create and launch the first annual North Jersey Teen Conference. It was attended by 4-H teens from many of New Jersey's northern counties. A joint teen and adult staff committee planned the conference, and all workshops presented during the April weekend retreat were developed as youth-adult partnerships and run by teens.

One of the most popular workshops last year was on the subject of racial justice and environmental sensitivity. It was developed by our own Teen Council President, Ivan W. Ivan is getting new material together to cover the same topics from different angles for NJTC 2009. He, Laura and Andrea from Bergen County are on the planning committee for the second year too.

The Bergen/Passaic Teen Council sponsors a couple of chaperoned camp-style outings each year. We assist at the family parties held for the entire county membership, and man the 4-H tent and games at County Fair. Bergen and Passaic 4-H selected the Passaic County Fair at Garrett Mountain for our fair venue this summer.

We also serve our community in a variety of ways. In 2007 we donated food items to Bergen County's end of year dinner for homeless individuals. At the Bergen/Passaic Food Fair last year a special Teen Council committee raised consciousness about the plight of the Jena 6 kids in Louisiana, who became victims of ethnic prejudice. This past spring we performed a highway cleanup and by doing it TC members earned county funds to put towards Teen Conference tuition.

4-H Clover

What is the national 4-H program?

4-H is a national youth leadership program sponsored by the federal government with county chapters throughout the US. 4-H began as a program designed to teach modern farming techniques to rural youths, and that component still exists. But, today, 4-H programs exist in cities and suburban areas too and 4-H isn't all about just farming any more.

4-H members learn effective public speaking skills from expert coaches and get involved in community service projects. College admissions officers look very favorably on applications from 4-H kids because they know our members are dedicated to helping their communities and to doing things right.

4-Hers learn how to run a meeting by official Robert's rules and can participate in annual 4-H public speaking presentation events. 4-H teens have the opportunity to attend CWF, which is a week long summer trip to Washington, DC, where they stay at the national 4-H center and tour the capitol to learn about the judicial process, meet politicians and visit legislative buildings.

Want to join the Teen Council?

  1. Download the 4-H Club Membership registration form (or phone the office and ask for one to be snail-mailed to you).
  2. Fill out the one-page form. Write in Teen Council as the name of your club.
  3. Sign it, and ask your parents to sign too.
  4. Bring the form with you to the next Teen Council meeting you attend or mail it to the Bergen County 4-H Office.
  5. That's all you need to do. You'll be a member as soon as the form is received!

New Jersey State 4-H Office Non-Discriminiation Statement

"The 4-H Youth Development Program is part of Rutgers Cooperative Extension. 4-H educational programs are offered to all youth, grades K-13, on an age-appropriate basis, without regard to race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, or disability. For additional information, contact: New Jersey State 4-H Office.

New Jersey State 4-H Mission Statement

"The Rutgers Cooperative Extension 4-H Youth Development program uses a learn-by-doing approach to enable youth to develop the knowledge, attitudes, and skills they need to become competent, caring, and contributing citizens of the world. This mission is accomplished by using the knowledge and resources of the land-grant university system, along with the involvement of caring adults."

The 4-H Emblem

The 4-H Name & Emblem is protected under "18 USC 707.”