At the age of 12, Cam Crogie joined a group of young 4-H youth for the first time, as part of 4-H Calf Club. For the greater part of his teenage years, Cam was a participant and attendee at calf & cow shows, training sessions, and other 4-H community events. As a 4-H’er Cam always felt safe and involved—helping him to learn and develop his leadership skills.
“4-H has always been a safe place and is still true today. I was always given the opportunity to learn and develop my leadership skills over time.”
Volunteer leaders have always been a very important part of 4-H Ontario and still are today. Cam recalls Dirk Roke, one of his volunteer leaders who was a great example of what it means to be a leader. Cam saw firsthand how he went above and beyond to help 4-H youth with their projects. He was a reliable Club Leader with whom members could depend on as they learn to take care of farm animals through hands-on activities.
Cam and his wife, Agatha, both 4-H Alumni, have been 4-H volunteers at one point or another. When their son’s club needed a Beef Club Leader they volunteered and shared the same values and responsibilities they learned as participants. Together with 4-H youth, they provided meals to homeless people in Pembroke, a city about 30 minutes from their home.
As a 4-Her Cam participated in various community services that instilled in him values like responsibility, leadership, and respect for others. For Cam, 4-H helped his children develop their leadership skills the same way he developed his as a 4-H participant.
“My children gained a lot of leadership skills like public speaking—they’re both really good public speakers. They have a sense of responsibility and a sense of giving to their community, to not only take but to give back. I see these skills in most of our members too.”
Today, Cam works as 4-H Ontario’s Region 2 Coordinator of Volunteer Support, providing support to volunteers within Eastern Ontario, while Agatha is currently the County Coordinator for Renfrew County. Cam hopes that he can leave a legacy of acceptance and as he rightfully put it, “…We might not always agree but I would like us to continue to accept each other as we are.”