New Youth Program Associate for Camden County

I am looking forward to my new assignment as Youth Program Associate (YPA) for Camden County.  Having spent fifteen plus years doing business in the lake area, I am familiar with the territory, but anxious to meet new people and especially those I will be working with.  I have already been made to feel welcome here at the MU Extension in Camden County Office and I consider myself to be in great company.  As someone who has had a rewarding background working with young people, I especially enjoy summer camps, retreats and other outdoor activities.  I realize that I have much to learn, but I know I will enjoy doing so.  I am grateful for the opportunity of working in Camden County and the surrounding lake area.  After January 1, 2019, I plan on being here at the Office every Wednesday from 8 a.m. to Noon and 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.  My office hours on other days will vary from week to week. 

We have some good things going on with Camden County 4-H.  On January 5, the Easy Riders 4-H Equine Club enjoyed an indoor riding clinic in Rogersville, MO.  Twelve youth and four adults participated. 

I am pleased to announce also that we have had someone step forward to head up a Photography Project if enough interest is expressed.  I feel this could be a great opportunity in that here in the Lake Area we are fortunate to be in a "target rich" environment for photo opportunities!  There is also a very good possibility of a drone project in the not too distant future....  

Also, Gerald Harvey who is the Shotgun Project 4-H Volunteer for MU Extension in Laclede County has extended the invitation to any safety trained students and volunteers in Camden County to participate in any practices or events that might be on his schedule.

Please feel free to drop by and say hello.

Sincerely, David W. Atkinson, Youth Program Associate 

Get involved with 4-H

Young people are welcome to join any of the Camden County clubs. They can attend meetings, complete 4-H projects, exhibit their projects in the local fairs and the state fair, participate in local events, state and national trips and events and qualify for college scholarships. Camden County currently has 63 members and 18 adult volunteers enrolled in 4-H clubs. Contact David Atkinson, 573-346-2644 or atkinsond@missouri.edu for more information.

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How to join 4-H

University of Missouri Extension 4-H

Empowering young people to reach their full potential

4-H brings young people, ages 5 to 19, and adults together to learn everyday skills through hands-on learning. Working on activities from animal and plant sciences to robotics, 4-H’ers learn problem-solving skills that can make a positive impact upon our community. Through 4-H, young people learn to:

  • meet the diverse challenges of today’s world;
  • build self-confidence;
  • learn responsibility; and
  • make positive decisions.
4-H clubs

4-H clubs are open to ages 8 to 18. Clubs meet monthly for group activities and club business. Each club elects officers and has an approved adult leader who supervises club activities. Club members also enroll in projects in their areas of interest.

With projects on more than 75 topics, 4-H has something to interest every child. Here are just a few of the opportunities 4-H offers—geocaching, robotics, international exchanges, horsemanship, pets, starting a business, arts and crafts, raising animals, woodworking, photography and gardening.

Clover Kids clubs

Clover Kids introduces 5- to 7-year-olds to the 4-H experience. In Clover Kids, children learn how to get along with others, work in groups, explore their interests, while building self-confidence. Clover Kids do not enroll in projects or raise animals, and do not participate in competitive events, contests or shows.

How to join

Joining 4-H is as easy as contacting the extension center. A staff member will explain the enrollment process and membership dues. In addition to dues, some projects may require a small investment to get started, and there may be a fee for materials, trips or other activities.

Young people are welcome to join at any time. The 4-H program year runs from Sept. 1 to Aug. 31. Certain activities may have participation deadlines.


4-H Online enrollment system
Missouri 4-H Clover—A guide to 4-H projects, activities and publications. It is designed to assist volunteers, members and their families select projects and activities, and set goals.

Be a 4-H volunteer

Adult volunteers are essential to 4-H. Adult volunteers serve as club or project leaders, help with county or regional events, chair committees and organize fund raisers. You don't have to be a parent or grandparent of the 4-H member to get involved. All volunteers are screened for child abuse and neglect, as well criminal records, before they are accepted and each year thereafter. As a volunteer, University of Missouri Extension will provide you with training so you will be well-prepared and successful as an adult leader. The orientation includes information on 4-H history and the educational framework, the characteristics of age groups, character development and safety.