When I started Raised in a Barn I had some idea that I would probably be working with FFA, 4-H, and Grange members. Knowing that Raised in a Barn promotes youth getting involved in these organizations, it just seemed natural to allow FFA, 4-H, and Grange members the ability to begin blogging on Raised in a Barn. After bringing 40 members from the ages of 14-18, and working with multiple FFA, 4-H, and Grange chapters around the United States, I realized that I had a lot to learn from these kids.
So here are the top 10 things I've learned working with FFA, 4-H, and Grange members.
- Not all members come from a farming background. Some of the Raised in a Barn Representatives joined FFA by accident and soon realized they enjoyed it.
- These kids are well-rounded. Many of the members are in multiple clubs and organizations. I have seen kids go straight from a basketball game to a livestock show. They can balance their multiple activities like a professional.
- They know agriculture. These kids might be young, but they are full of knowledge of the agriculture industry. Ask an FFA, 4-H, or Grange member something about agriculture. You will probably be surprised on how much they know.
- They are passionate. These kids are passionate about the things they do in their organizations. Whether that be doing photography for 4-H, or showing livestock in Grange, they are passionate about what they do, and you can see it.
- Their agriculture stories are amazing. Some of these kids are third or fourth generation farmers and they can tell you about their families history.
- They can handle opposing views. I think many of us struggle when it comes to someone arguing with our beliefs. I have watched the Raised in a Barn Representatives look at the argument from both sides, and use that to help explain their point of view. They are focused on educating and arguing.
- They are well mannered. I am always amazed when the Raised in a Barn Representatives reply back to comments, emails, and messages. They are always as polite as they can be.
- They are well spoken. It's easy to carry on a conversation with them about whats happening in the agriculture industry. They keep up with whats happening in the agriculture industry, and do a great job at explaining it.
- They are inspiring. These kids inspire me every single day. They are some of the best and brightest kids around. They make me a better person by just knowing them.
- They don't just believe in the future of agriculture, they are the future of agriculture. These kids are our next farmers and ranchers. They are our next teachers, doctors, lawyers, mechanics, welders, bankers, etc. They are our future.
I could make a list of so many more things, but I'll leave it at 10. To the kids that write in to Raised in a Barn, I want to personally thank you for being great. You are our future, and your voice matters. Please always feel free to send us a message or ask us a question.
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