Donna White

This week, I thought I would share with you some good things that are happening in Erath County due to the generosity of time and resources in our local community. Every summer, one of my goals is to offer quality workshops in the area of family and consumer sciences for the youth of our community. With the help of many volunteers, a successful Food Camp and Clothing Camp came to fruition.

First, Food Camp was held in June with about 25 youth participating. Star Council was a co-sponsor and we had volunteers from Tarleton State University, as well as local businesses, making this educational event a great learning experience for the youth. Tarleton State University Cafeteria opened their doors and showed us up close and personal what it was like to feed hungry college kids! The local HEB grocery store gave us a super tour of their facilities and let the youth have some hands-on opportunities checking out groceries. One of the favorite sessions for the kids was talking to the meat manager and seeing his wire mesh gloves! Tri-County Agribusiness donated calcium-rich snacks for us, and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints provided the facility. During camp, participants learned about nutrition and food safety, and then spent some time cooking and learning cooking techniques. The highlight of the camp was when the youth made lunch for their parents on the last day of the event. Pulido’s provided us with napkins for the duration of the event.

Clothing Camp was held just last week with about 30 youth participating. Teaching young people the lost art of sewing takes patience and many volunteers! Not only did parents and older 4-H’ers step up to help out, but Town and Country Quilt Guild sent volunteers. In advance of the camp, quilt guild members also took the time to cut up and package 30 quilt blocks for the youth to sew for our 4-H Community Service Quilt. This quilt will be machine-quilted and raffled off in the fall to serve as the Erath County 4-H fundraiser to benefit Erath County United Way. Along with the quilt, clothing camp participants also worked on wall hangings and initial pillows. Material donated by the Flying Needle was used during this year’s clothing camp, and for three days, the Texas A&M Research and Extension Center provided us with enough working space to accommodate 30 kids and their sewing machines, along with parents and adult volunteers. Thanks to all of you!

In 4-H, we feel very strongly about the need to instill in our youth the concept of giving back to the community. What a great example we have here in Erath County of adults and local businesses demonstrating that very concept to our youth. Thanks Erath County!