Nearly all animals at the farm are owned and cared for by individual children (and their parents). Before joining an animal project, you should realize that they involve a commitment of time. The animal doesn't eat unless you feed it (or make arrangements with other project members to help out). Those projects that involve lots of time (averaging an hour a day) include Horses and Veal Calves. Other animals can take just a few minutes most days, but you'll probably want to spend more time playing with them. Market animals (sheep, swine and veal calves) are raised in the spring and sold in the summer. Other animals are owned and must be cared for the entire year.

In Orange County, California, you can find out more information about 4-H from:

University of California
Orange County

PHONE: (714) 708-1606
FAX: (714) 708-2754

More information about 4-H can be found at the National 4-H Council web site.

4-H is a nonformal educational youth program, conducted by the University of California's Cooperative Extension as authorized by federal and state statutes. In each county, the local Extension staff (County Director and 4-H Youth Advisors) has the authority to administer the program in accordance with University and Extension policy.

4-H provides a wide variety of things to do and learn. Members belong to a group and take part in group events, or explore their own special interests on an individual basis. Youth may enroll in 4-H on their 9th birthday or when entering the 4th grade, whichever comes first, and may be members until the end of the calendar year in which they become 19.

The purpose of 4-H is to help young people discover and develop their potential. 4-H encourages young people to set their own goals and make their own plans and decisions. This helps boys and girls mature and builds their self-confidence. By being part of a group, 4-H'ers learn to understand other people and to cooperate with them. These are two basic skills for a happy, useful life.


The goals of 4-H are to help young people:


The 4-H members in a club elect their officers and plan, implement, and evaluate an annual Plan of Work. An adult volunteer leader coaches the club's officers and members in these activities and guides them as they acquire leadership skills. Any parent or adult volunteer leader may join the discussion during a 4-H meeting, but only 4-H members vote on matters that are brought before the club. The meetings also enable members and parents to get together to share experiences and interests. One of the good things 4-H offers is an opportunity to enjoy learning with family and friends.


Learning by doing in an atmosphere where learning is fun is a basic philosophy of 4-H. The project is where learning by doing takes place. Within the project, members find things to learn, things to do, things to make, and things to explore. A 4-H project is: Each year a 4-H member takes at least one project. Members enrolling for the first time should be encouraged to take only one project. As boys and girls gain experience, the size of the project may be increased and/or additional projects may be selected. With their project leader and parents as consultants, members should select a project that will be a challenge, but not one that is larger than they can handle. Any project a 4-H member selects should be based on: A 4-H project is supervised by the project leader with the help of the member's parents, but it is the 4-H member who must do the work. Some projects (raising plants and animals) involve the production of items for sale. Where this is the case, a business agreement should be established between the 4-H member and his or her parents.

Some project groups meet once a week. Others meet once or twice a month. The purpose of these meetings is to guide the members in gaining knowledge, attitudes, skills, and habits needed to complete their work successfully.

Member's guides, reports, and records are available free to 4-H members for most projects. The volunteer who leads the project will obtain these for the 4-H members. 4-H record forms help the members keep track of what they do in their project work.

What projects are available?

Each county has a variety of projects to offer. The following is a list of general project areas that are offered: In accordance with applicable Federal laws and University policy, the University of California does not discriminate in any of its policies, procedures or practices on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, age, veteran status, medical condition or handicap. Inquiries regarding this policy may be addressed to the Affirmative Action Director, University of California, Agriculture and Resources, 300 Lakeside Drive, 6th Floor, Oakland, CA 94612-3560. (415) 987-0097.


I pledge:
my Head to clearer thinking,
my Heart to greater loyalty,
my Hands to larger service,
my Health to better living,
for my club, my community,
my country, and my world.

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These pages were designed by the Computer Science project of the Irvine Mesa Charros 4-H Club.