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Volunteer Leadership

Volunteers are essential to the continued growth and development of a successful 4-H program. A volunteer may be a 4-H parent, relative or friend or a supporter of 4-H. Volunteers may serve as judges, club or project leaders, chaperons, resource persons or promoters. These unique individuals give not only their time, approximately 220 hours per year, but also their resources, donating over $1.9 billion.


Oklahoma's cadre of more than 8,500 adult leaders have found that as they help young people develop skills, they cultivate a few of their own. Adult volunteers develop self confidence and other leadership skills effective communication, planning and goal-setting, management and group dynamics. They develop skills they can use in other leadership roles in their churches, civic organizations and communities. Many volunteers use the skills they develop as 4H leaders to launch themselves into new jobs.


As volunteers develop new skills and interests, new opportunities open for them at the county, district, or state levels. The following are some of the leadership roles open to adults in the 4-H program.


Organization Leader

The organization leader coordinates the overall club program and the activities of members and other leaders. He or she serves as the club's communication link with the County Extension staff and the 4-H and Youth Council.

Project Leader

Project leaders work with groups of members who are all enrolled in the same project. They help members set their individual project goals, teach new skills in project meetings, prepare for related activities such as demonstrations or judging, complete project records and prepare projects for exhibit.

Activity Leader

Activity leaders work with groups of members participating in 4-H activities. Health, safety, conservation, recreation, community involvement and other activities can involve groups of members or the entire club membership.

Volunteer Training

The Oklahoma 4-H Program offers training workshops for leaders at the local and district level and in special conferences and training meetings at the state and national level. Late in July, Oklahoma 4-H volunteers gather for their annual conference. Leaders and agents attend workshops where they share ideas. Outstanding 4-H volunteers are recognized at this time also.

To learn more about becoming a 4-H volunteer or to apply, contact the Grady County Extension Office at (405) 224-2216 or email at


Volunteer Certification

To maintain your status as an "active" certified volunteer in the Oklahoma 4-H Program, a person is required to:

  1. Annually complete an Enrollment form, Behavioral Guidelines and Agreement form, and Confidentiality Statement.
  2. Participate in 4 continuing education/Parent-Volunteer trainings each year.  Two continuing education/trainings for volunteers must be at the county/unit level with your OCES professional(s) or as Self-study Units. The other two educational opportunities may take place at the county, district or state levels. The education may be professional development related to youth work or subject matter relevant to the individual's position in the 4-H program. The volunteer is responsible for providing documentation of outside continuing education/training to the county Extension office.

Volunteers who do not complete the necessary steps for maintaining certification will not retain their "active" status as a certified volunteer. The volunteer may be placed on a one-year probation with an explanation of what is necessary to retain their "active" status.


If following the probationary time the individual has not adequately completed the expectation the volunteer will be moved to an "inactive" status. If they remain inactive for a period of 3 consecutive years the individual will have to re-apply to obtain their "certification" status.


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