The 4-H program relies on dedicated volunteers. In Wirt County, we are fortunate to have several extremely dedicated volunteers who work with youth to ensure they have a safe learning environment. Whether that means leading a community club, helping plan 4-H camp, or assisting with activities, our 4-H volunteers are always willing to step up and lend a helping hand. On November 3, 2018, a few of our volunteers were recognized for their excellence in service at the West Virginia 4-H Volunteer Leaders Weekend held at Jackson’s Mill.
Kristin Reeder and Robert (Bob) Sims received their All Star pins. This award is the highest award any 4-H member or leader can receive and recognizes outstanding service and dedication to the organization. Reeder is the co-leader of the Newark Shining Stars 4-H club. She is also a member of the Wirt County Fair Board and a volunteer for 4-H camp. Her passion for serving others and helping youth grow into leaders is evident in every event she helps with. Sims is the co-leader for the PeeWee Go Getters 4-H club. He can be found helping with the Wirt County Community Garden or helping check in exhibits at the Wirt County Fair. Both leaders have dedicated a large part of their time to helping the 4-H organization grow.
In addition to being recognized as a 4-H All Star, Bob Sims and wife Sharyn were recognized as Outstanding 4-H Volunteers. This team has lead our county with kind hearts and a servant’s attitude. Their community 4-H club has been featured as a blue-ribbon club in our community for many years, with high rates of participation, project completion, and attendance. Both Bob and Sharyn serve in many other volunteer capacities. Sharyn serves as President of the Wirt County 4-H Leaders Association and worked with other 4-H leaders in the absence of an Extension Agent to ensure critical programming was still available for youth. Bob is a member of the Community Garden Board and provides oversight and labor each time a project needs completed. With his help, the garden has grown into a safe, educational space community members enjoy. This husband/wife team have helped the Wirt County 4-H program thrive for several years. This accomplishment is well deserved by these leaders.
The Friends of 4-H Award recognizes individuals, business organizations, agencies or other institutions who have provided significant support to the 4-H program. This award was given to the Camp Barbe Association in recognition of their constant dedication to the Wirt County 4-H program and the youth of our county. The Board of Directors for Camp Barbe work in a volunteer capacity to ensure the facility is a safe and welcoming place for 4-H’ers, fair goers, and families. The venue is a staple in our community and is frequently used to host large events that would otherwise have to travel out of our county. Camp Barbe is one of the only 4-H grounds in the state that provides the space at no cost to the 4-H program. This allows us to keep the cost of camp low for our county 4-H’ers. John and Jenny Jones were present to accept the award on behalf of the association. Both John and Jenny are members of the Camp Barbe Board and are leaders in organizing the bi-annual Camp Barbe Equipment Auctions.
The West Virginia University Extension Service thanks every volunteer who continues to support the core mission of 4-H. While the youth are the faces of our program, the volunteers are the ones who make it possible. These awards are a small way to recognize the importance of volunteers and organizations who support 4-H. Congratulations to all the recipients!