May 13, 2021

4-H serves community during COVID outbreak

Indiana 4-H holds annual meeting

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Over the past 12 months, the Indiana 4-H Foundation has awarded more than $40,000 in COVID-19 grants to 44 counties.

“These grants have allowed those communities to meet the basic needs for Hoosiers,” said Sean Sharma, board chairman of Indiana 4-H Foundation, during its annual meeting.

Continuing the trend, young alumni board members created an initiative called the YES grant. YES stands for Youth Engaged Service.

“These are meant to fund 4-Hers across the state who have a vision on how to make their community a better place,” Sharma said. “These projects will not only teach valuable leadership and life skills, but will also connect youth to their communities in a meaningful way.”

The application period for 2021 is open through May 15. Projects must be completed by Dec. 31.

More information about the grants is available at

At the annual meeting, leaders celebrated the 60th anniversary of the Indiana 4-H Foundation.

“Purdue University Cooperative Extension Service proudly makes 4-H available in all 92 counties,” Sharma said. “Many things have changed over the foundation’s 60 years of existence, but our mission remains the same: we strive to provide resources that give the opportunity for all Indiana youth to develop life skills that benefit their communities through involvement in 4-H.”

In the last 10 years, more than $6 million has been raised to support Indiana 4-H. These funds have gone to program development on the state and local level. More than 40 endowments have been established.

Since 2008, more than $1.5 million has been given directly to youth in the form of scholarships, with even more benefiting from statewide leadership events.

“The foundation and 4-H program must remain responsive to the times and challenges that our community faces,” Sharma said. “Many of us and our communities have suffered losses in the past year. We honor our heritage and our memories as we continue to serve the youth of tomorrow.”

Erica Quinlan

Field Editor