4-H Clubs

The purpose of a 4-H club is to provide positive youth development opportunities designed to meet the needs of young people to experience belonging, mastery, independence, and generosity.

Any youth age 8 to 18 by January 1 of the current year may become a member of a 4-H Club. Youth ages 5 to 7 may participate in our Clover Kids program. Members are required to enroll. All Missouri 4-H clubs are required to be chartered.

4-H Clubs conduct regular meetings usually somewhere in the community, like a club leaders' home, a library, school, community center, etc. Meetings can also be held virtually. Members participate together in-service learning projects, serve as club officers, give presentations, and complete projects. Missouri 4-H offers these types of clubs:

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    Community clubs

    • Typically meet in the evenings or on weekends.
    • Members enroll in projects, participate in group activities and attend club meetings.
    • Organized and supported by a volunteer club leader and team of recognized volunteers.
    • Elect officers and plan learning activities and community service activities together.
    • May opt to be a single project club, where all members focus on the same project.
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    SPIN (special interest) clubs

    • Focus on a specific topic led by an expert in the field.
    • Meet for a set period (e.g. weekly or bi-weekly for 6-8 weeks).
    • Can elect officers and plan learning activities with options of public speaking, community service and links to career readiness.
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    In-school clubs

    • Meet during school with varying from short period of time to a full 4-H program year.
    • Youth participate in projects that supplement their existing lessons.
    • Can elect officers and plan learning activities with options of public speaking, community service and links to career readiness.
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    Afterschool clubs

    • Meet after school varying from a short period of time to a full 4-H program year.
    • With over 100 different project topic areas there can be multiple, grade specific focus on a single project.
    • Can elect officers and plan learning activities with options of public speaking, community service and links to career readiness.
  Community clubs including Clover Kids (ages 5-18) SPIN Clubs (ages 5-18) Afterschool club (KG-12 grade) In-school club (KG-12 grade) School enrichment (KG-12 grade)
Minimum number of members 5 members from 3 families 3 members from 2 families  
Enrollment Individual enrollment through 4-H Online Group enrollment (if students want to participate in anything outside of school, they must enroll individually)
Enrollment fees $20 per member + county dues Group enrollment fee vaires
When do we meet? Anytime After school hours During school hours During school hours
How often do we meet? Year-long Short term: at least 6 hours Varies, but minimum 6 hours Short term
Eligible for participation?
4-H Council
Club Charter
Exhibit at county fair
Regional energizers, camps, Teen Conference, 4-H Congress
County-level fund raising activities
✔ = eligible ♢ = if youth chooses to enroll individually

Membership requirements

  • 4-H Club membership is open to all youth age 8 through 18 (as of January 1).
  • Youth ages 5 to 7 are eligible as Clover Kids. Clover Kids may participate in regular 4-H Clubs or special 4-H Clover Kid Clubs.
  • 4-H Club membership is open to all youth without regard to race, ethnicity, color, national origin, gender identity, sex, pregnancy, disability, sexual orientation, genetic information, veteran's status, marital status, religion, political affiliation or socioeconomic backgrounds.
  • All 4-H club members must be enrolled in a 4-H club each year. The 4-H year runs from October 1 to September 30. Each year club members must re-enroll.

Awards

  • Standards of Excellence
    • The purpose of standards and seals is to provide recognition for 4-H clubs and groups reaching Missouri 4-H standards of excellence. The goal of standards and seals is to provide 4-H clubs with an external, pre-determined target for their group's learning experience.
    More Info
  • 4-H Youth Service to Communities
    • Each year, clubs are asked to fill out the Youth Service to Communities (LG760) form to capture how volunteering and giving back is impacting our communities.
    • Each 4-H club will receive a certificate with a colored seal based on the average number of hours all club members and volunteers spent on club community service projects.

4-H Annual club chartering process

4-H has a unique federal-state-local partnership that has stood the test of over 100 years. The Smith-Lever Act of 1914 created the Cooperative Extension Service as a partnership between the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the land-grant university (LGU) system, and local governments.

Because the county 4-H program is connected to the USDA, there are certain guidelines that we MUST follow. The name 4-H and its recognized emblem, the Clover, are federal marks with protections and standards that exceed that of trademarks and copyrights (see How Do I Get Permission to Use the 4-H Name and Emblem? section above). Using the 4-H Name and Emblem is a privilege that requires federal authorization. In order to make sure that the name and emblem are protected, a federal-state-local partnership must be entered into. This is done in the form of a charter.

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    Our 4-H group is new. How do we become chartered?

    How to become a chartered 4-H club/council/group using 4HOnline:

    • Once you are approved as a volunteer, you can charter the 4-H group.
    • Log into 4HOnline using your profile and click the orange button – Continue to Family.
    • At the bottom of the next page are two boxes – Member Reports is the first one and Register a Member in an Event is the second box.
    • In the second box, select yourself as the member then use the dropdown menu to select "New 4-H Group Info Sheet".
    • For clubs: Use the name your club selected earlier but include: County, Delivery Mode and the words 4-H Club (Eagles of Macon County Afterschool 4-H Club).
    • For 4-H Councils, use the name "4-H Council," list the county and select "Community" as the delivery mode.

    Once the 4-H group is approved, then your group will receive its charter. 4-H Charters are issued by the United States Department of Agriculture and signed by the Secretary of Agriculture's designated representative. This is the only document that officially recognizes a 4-H groups and authorizes its use of the 4-H Name and Emblem for the conduct of 4-H Youth Development programs. Your 4-H club will receive an approval letter from the 4-H State Office (Missouri 4-H Center for Youth Development). Keep this letter in your 4-H group files.

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    Our 4-H group has been chartered. What do we need to do to remain chartered?

    Your 4-H group will complete the annual charter renewal process. As the club leader, you will be asked to complete an annual charter checklist that will determine if the club will be re-chartered. How to submit the 4-H Charter Renewal Checklist through 4HOnline:

    • Once you are approved as a volunteer, you can charter the 4-H group.
    • Log into 4HOnline using your profile and click the orange button – Continue to Family.
    • At the bottom of the next page are two boxes – Member Reports is the first one and Register a Member in an Event is the second box.
    • In the second box, select yourself as the member then use the dropdown menu to select "20-21 4-H Charter Renewal Checklist".
    • For clubs: Use the name your club selected earlier but include: County, Delivery Mode and the words 4-H Club (Eagles of Macon County Afterschool 4-H Club)
    • For 4-H Councils, use the name "4-H Council," list the county and select "Community" as the delivery mode.

    Your group will not receive a new 4-H Charter, but will receive notification that your charter renewal application has been approved. If you need a copy of your club's charter, contact the MU Extension 4-H county office.