Michigan 4H


DATE: March 2015

CONTACT: Sally Stuby, Campaign Chairperson

Ph. 269-435-7432 or stuby@msu.edu


Centreville, Mich. – Supporters of St. Joseph County 4-H programs have an opportunity to double their personal support for 4-H by helping to “Make the Match for St. Joseph County 4-H.”

St. Joseph County 4-H has set a goal of raising $20,000 locally which, if successful, will result in the county 4-H program qualifying for a 1:1 match from the Michigan 4-H Foundation of every dollar raised to build an endowment for 4-H programs in St. Joseph County.

Two local insurance agencies have teamed up to start the campaign.  Ayres Insurance Agency and Chupp Insurance, both of Sturgis, are donating $250 each to the campaign.  In addition, Fremont Insurance Company through Chupp Insurance and Hastings Mutual Insurance Agency through Ayres Insurance, are each contributing an additional $250 to the fund.  Jeff Brazo, Vice President or Ayres Insurance and Rod Chupp, Co-Owner of Chupp Insurance, noted that they offer this total of $1,000 as a challenge to other insurance agencies and companies to step up and support the campaign.  Mr. Chupp noted, “Agriculture is the bedrock of our county and state economy.  As such, those individuals and businesses that are fortunate enough to enjoy an active role in our agricultural community should naturally desire to help sustain that heritage through programs and opportunities such as this 4-H Endowment.”

Sally Stuby, “Make the Match” campaign chairperson, said, “Research has shown that youth participating in 4-H have better social and leadership skills, are more likely to attend post-secondary education, and are better prepared for career and life challenges.  This endowment will provide some permanent, long-term support for 4-H youth in St. Joseph County.”

County 4-H programs in Michigan have historically been funded by a partnership between federal, state and county governments, Michigan State University and gifts from private supporters.  With increasing reductions in public support for 4-H, 4-H families, volunteers, clubs, alumni and other friends are coming together to build private support to sustain 4-H in local communities.

The St. Joseph County 4-H Endowment, when doubled by the match, will provide annual support for current  4-H program delivery, for future 4-H program enhancements and other areas of greatest need that would serve to advance delivery of 4-H in St. Joseph County.

Eva Beeker, St. Joseph County Program Coordinator said, “The Make the Match campaign will help to provide money to begin new programs within 4-H to better serve our youth in St. Joseph County. Programs like robotics, geocaching and other fun yet educational areas that are of interest to today’s youth will be explored and implemented with the money that will be made available.”

The “Make the Match for St. Joseph County” campaign is made possible by grants from the Herbert H. and Grace A. Dow Foundation, the Rollin M. Gerstacker Foundation and gifts made by individual leadership donors to the Michigan 4-H Foundation.  The goal is to raise $1 million in endowment for county 4-H programs in Michigan that will in turn be doubled by the match from these leadership contributors.

For information on how you can help “Make the Match for St. Joseph County
4-H”, visit the campaign web site at www.mi4hfdtn.org/countymatch  or contact the St. Joseph County MSU Extension office at 269-467-5511.  Sally Stuby, campaign chairperson, may be contacted at 269-435-7432 or stuby@msu.edu.

St. Joseph County 4-H is a program of Michigan State University Extension 4-H Youth Development Programs whose mission is to create non-formal, educational opportunities to help youth thrive in a complex and changing world.  The Michigan 4-H Foundation supports Michigan 4-H Youth Development programs to prepare youth for meaningful and productive lives.