4-H teaches life skills and lessons

When it comes to helping the community and having fun, freshman Molly Christiaens is enthusiastic.

Christiaens participates in 4-H to help other people and herself prepare for the future and to help the community. The origination’s emblem represents living things, purity, and cleanliness.

“Everyone in my family did 4-H,” Christiaens said.

CMR freshman Ashlee Brandt, Christiaens’ closest friend, is in the organization for the same reasons.

“I wanted to join 4-H because I wanted to give back to my community,” Brandt said.

Giving back to the community with service and fundraisers, as well as raising cattle and helping children learn are just some of the things they do in and near the community.

Christiaens has been in 4-H for seven years and has a lot more experience and has done more activities than Brandt, who joined 4-H about a year ago.

Photography, cooking, sewing, speeches, interviews, and 4-H exchange are the main activities that Christiaens does. As a Junior Director, she sets up the summer camp and helps plan and lead it.

“I can be in charge and tell the little kids what to do,” she said.

Brandt, on the other hand, is still working her way up the scale. Not having as much experience as others, she still has similar goals as Christiaens.

“I can be able to say I’ve given back to the community and helped the younger generation prepare for the future,” Brandt said.

Christiaens also wants to get things out of 4-H.

“[It] gets me ready for the big ol’ world and ready for the future lifestyle,” she said. “[4-H] helps make a better world and gets other people involved and encouraged to join.”

Christiaens heard plenty of conversations about 4-H in her family, and it’s not a surprise that almost her whole family has been in or a part of 4-H.

“4-H is a family, with friends and family coming together as a whole,” she said.

Christiaens has two older brothers, Scott and Adam, and two older sisters, Tiffany and Mary Ann, as well as her mom, Mary, who has been involved in 4-H since she was a kid. Her mom has helped with meetings and as a chaperone.

Brandt and Christiaens agree on one thing.

“4-H is a really great experience and really good for people to set and achieve goals. All around, you get to meet friends and lifelong friends. Overall, it’s a great program and does help out families,” Christiaens said.