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4-H Leadership Development Pillars

The leadership development pillars are the root of the 4-H program, including community engagement and communications, science and technology, the environment and healthy living and sustainable agriculture and food security.

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The leadership development pillars are the core competencies that lie at the root of the 4-H program. There are four leadership development pillars: community engagement and communications, science and technology, the environment and healthy living and sustainable agriculture and food security.

Sustainable Agriculture & Food Security

For more than a century, 4-H’ers have been a strong force within Canada’s primary economic sector: agriculture. Over time, the movement has grown to include a focus on sustainable agricultural practices and the importance of food security both at home and abroad. This 4-H leadership development pillar is vital to the growth of youth and the food we eat worldwide.

  • Appreciation for the food we eat and grow.
  • Learning about innovation and sustainable agricultural practices.
  • Exploring new ways to improve nutrition and food security.
  • Exchanging ideas and solutions at home and abroad.

The Environment & Healthy Living

The 4-H program ensures youth have opportunities to succeed by keeping exploration and self-discovery at the forefront of all programs and activities.

  • Learning to be stewards of the environment by developing sustainable solutions.
  • Taking care of yourself and others.
  • Maintaining a healthy active lifestyle.
  • Making informed decisions.
  • Diving in and getting your hands dirty.
  • Learning to listen to your heart.

Science & Technology

4-H’ers are known as catalysts for change and drivers for innovation in science and technology. Engaging youth in hands-on science and technology-based projects is an important aspect of 4-H. 4-H creates opportunities for youth to explore the connections between science, technology, society and their own lives.

  • Engage in STEM
  • Explore ideas.
  • Use critical thinking skills.
  • Extend your mind and reach for the sky!

Community Engagement & Communications

4-H provides youth with opportunities to get involved in their community as engaged, active leaders who affect positive change within their club, community, country and world. Community engagement means:

  • Effecting positive change in your community and beyond.
  • Lending a hand.
  • Stepping up to the plate.
  • Exploring issues, finding a voice and speaking up about matters that affect you and the world around you.
  • Acting as a role model for the change you want to see in the world.