There are more than 13,000 adult volunteers in California, and 600,000 volunteers nation-wide. Supported by 4-H professionals, these volunteers help youth develop into responsible, self-directed, productive citizens of the world.
Volunteer leaders are a key component of the 4-H program, which focuses on citizenship, leadership, and life skills development using a "learn-by-doing" educational model. 4-H is unique in its pursuit of effective youth-adult partnerships. These partnerships ensure that both youth and adults grow together in shared responsibility and decision-making. This
4-H volunteer echoes a common sentiment, stating, "As a 4-H leader, I have truly received as much from the program as my children have."
In addition to making a difference in the lives of young people, volunteers have many opportunities for their own personal and professional development through the 4-H Youth Development Program. As one volunteer said, "The most memorable aspect of being a 4-H volunteer leader is the quality of the 4-H program as an education vehicle. I grew in self confidence and have since gone back to school to complete a Masters degree and teaching credential."
No matter your background or expertise, you can join the 4-H community. As a parent, a project leader, or in any other leadership capacity, you can offer your unique talents and perspectives.
All 4-H adult volunteers (ages 18 and older) must enroll annually (July 1 through June 30). 4-H Enrollment is conducted by the 4-H Club and County 4-H Office in each county. Enrollment procedures may vary in each county, so check with your County 4-H Offices for more information. 4-H YDP Volunteers are appointed by the County Director. The decision to appoint or not appoint a volunteer (whether initially or upon renewal) rests with the County Director, in consultation with appropriate 4-H staff. All appointments are made for the best interest of the 4-H Youth Development Program and 4-H members.
4-H Adult Volunteers are eligible to participate in 4-H if they meet the following criteria:
- Must be 18 years or older. A volunteer cannot simultaneously be a 4-H member. Chaperones must be 21 years of age or older (county age requirement may differ).
- Must complete a live-scan clearance with the Department of Justice - Inquire within your county 4-H office.
Steps to Take:
1. Find local clubs in your county by searching for your county 4-H office.
Adults can also volunteer in 4-H camps, afterschool, school enrichment and short term and special interest programs as well as 4-H events and conferences. Contact your local 4-H county office for details on these opportunities.
2. Enroll in the CA 4-H Youth Development Program. See detailed 4-H Adult Volunteer Enrollment Process.
Need more information or help with enrollment? Contact your County 4-H Office or the adult 4-H volunteer club/camp leader of the local club you are interested in joining. If you have previously enrolled in 4-H using the 4hOnline system, please use the same login information. Forgot your password or email? Request it through 4hOnline or contact your County 4-H Office.
Science, Engineering, Technology (SET): agriculture and life sciences, family and consumer resource management, environmental education, technology, engineering.
Citizenship: civic awareness, community service, service-learning, leadership & speaking, global citizenship.
Healthy Living: nutrition, physical health, safety, mental health.
Paper Enrollment Packet
This enrollment packet is used for adult volunteers in organized 4-H clubs, special interest and short-term programs, and 4-H Camps. Payment is required to enroll in 4-H for program fees and 4-H accident/sickness insurance. Inquire within your county 4-H office.
- 2016-2017 Adult Volunteer Application Form - English - pdf
- 2016-2017 Adult Volunteer Application Form - Spanish - pdf
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