The Wildcat Extension Education Foundation will host an inaugural fundraising event on January 16 at the Cedar Barn Event Center in Parsons. The evening will include a social hour starting at 5:30 p.m. followed by a dinner and auction at 6:30 p.m. 

“The goal for this fundraising event is to raise enough money to cover 4-H program fees for kids in our district,” said Foundation Chair Julie Voelker in a release. “This is the first goal we’ve set as a newly formed foundation.”

Former Crawford County 4-Her Amy (Brown) Dronberger, Ph.D. is the current director of research programs at Oklahoma State University and is a strong advocate of the program.

“Participating in 4-H was instrumental during my youth and the impacts of lessons learned have lasted well into my professional career. From the time I was seven years old, 4-H provided opportunities for public speaking, teamwork and volunteering,” Dronberger said in the release. “The 4-H program also afforded me the development of work ethic, sportsmanship, professionalism and record keeping. Each of these areas are life skills that could not be garnered solely through a classroom setting and are characteristics I truly utilize every day of my career. I’m so thankful to have rooted these skills at such a young age with 4-H.”

Kansas Shrine Bowl Director B.J. Harris also shared the impact of 4-H in his adult life.

“What’s great about the lessons learned while in 4-H is the fact that we didn’t even realize we were learning lifelong skills. Hard work, determination, perseverance, creativity and so much more. I even apply parliamentary procedures learned in 4-H to board meetings today,” Harris said in the release. “I’m positive that my 12 years involved in 4-H had a significant impact on my life and has helped mold me into the person that I am.”

There are currently over 700 active 4-H members in the Wildcat District which includes Crawford, Wilson, Montgomery and Labette counties. 

Tickets for the fundraising event are available for $45 each and may be reserved online at http://bit.ly/foundationgala. Sponsorship opportunities are also available and donations are welcome.

The Wildcat Extension Education Foundation is a 501c3 organization that exists to encourage educational and research endeavor and to promote public awareness and financial support for the Wildcat Education.

For more information, contact Cheri Nelsen, K-State Research and Extension Wildcat District Interim Director at 620-378-2167.