Nurturing Young Farmers and Future Leaders
BY KENDAL RAE JENSEN
Through its diverse offerings and unwavering dedication, the The Weber County Junior Livestock Program has become a cornerstone of agricultural education and youth development in the region.
The Weber County Junior Livestock Program is a comprehensive initiative designed to provide hands-on learning experiences to youth interested in livestock rearing and husbandry. Participants range from elementary school students to high school seniors, each with a passion for agriculture and a desire to explore the vast potential of the industry. By offering a structured framework and a supportive environment, the program aims to foster personal growth, build essential life skills, and cultivate a deep appreciation for the values of hard work, responsibility, and dedication. One of the program’s key highlights is the opportunity it provides for young individuals to raise and exhibit livestock. Participants have the chance to select and raise various animals, including cattle, sheep, goats, and swine. Under the guidance of experienced mentors and knowledgeable volunteers, these budding farmers learn the intricacies of animal care, nutrition, and management. From the moment they choose their livestock, the participants take on the responsibility of feeding, grooming, and training their animals, witnessing firsthand the rewards of their labor and the impact of their efforts.
Throughout the year, the Weber County 4H and FFA programs host a series of educational workshops and training sessions. These events cover a wide array of topics, ranging from showmanship techniques to animal health and welfare. Experts from the agricultural community are invited to share their knowledge and experiences, equipping the participants with valuable insights and practical skills. This comprehensive approach ensures that the young farmers gain a well-rounded understanding of the industry and are prepared to navigate its challenges.
The pinnacle of the program is the annual Junior Livestock Show and Auction at the Weber County Fair. This highly anticipated event provides participants with an opportunity to showcase their animals to the public and potential buyers. The showmanship competitions are a thrilling display of the participants’ hard work and dedication, as they demonstrate their ability to present their animals with poise and professionalism. Following the show, a livestock auction takes place, allowing participants to sell their animals and reap the rewards of their investment. The funds raised through the auction not only serve as a financial incentive but also contribute to the participants’ college savings or future agricultural endeavors. The program also fosters teamwork and camaraderie among participants, who form lasting friendships and support networks within the agricultural community.
The impact of the Weber County Junior Livestock Program extends far beyond the boundaries of agriculture. Through its emphasis on personal growth and leadership development, the program equips participants with skills applicable to any field. The experience gained in managing livestock, setting goals, and working towards achievement instills confidence, resilience, and a sense of purpose in the young individuals involved. Many program alumni go on to excel in their chosen careers, utilizing the skills and values they cultivated through their participation in the program.
Support the Youth of Weber County!
Attend the Weber County Livestock Shows during the Fair
Saturday, August 12th at 9 a.m.