Marion County 4-H Youth Development
4-H provides a safe and caring environment for young people to practice important life skills, make friends, and share their learning. Every 4-H’er’s journey is unique and catered to their specific interests.
Marion County boasts a diverse 4-H program that meets the interests of the young people in Indianapolis and surrounding towns. We have about 20 4-H clubs that are spearheaded by our passionate 4-H adult volunteers and offer over 60 projects for area youth. In addition to club and project activities, Marion County offers local, state, and national 4-H program opportunities.
About Marion County 4-H
Timeline: 4-H is year-round. Enrollment begins in October. From October through June, youth work on projects and learn valuable skills both with local community clubs and independently. In July, members can exhibit projects at the Marion County 4-H Showcase. Exhibiting at Showcase is optional unless youth are interested in competing at the Indiana State Fair.
Activities: Members attend monthly club meetings, complete community service, work on projects, and participate in social and/or educational events hosted by clubs or the Marion County Extension office.
Benefits: 4-H is FUN! Members make new friends, experience new things, participate in leadership roles, and learn hands-on skills through projects like cake decorating, shooting sports, dog agility, and much more!
Cost: Enrollment fees are $15 per year for members. Families enrolling three or more youth (grades 3 -12) receive a discount. There are no enrollment fees for 4-H’ers grades K-2.
Getting Started: First, enroll in Indiana 4-H. Then find a club near you to join. Contact club leaders for more information about available projects and the ages of members. Ask to try out a meeting as a guest. For more assistance, contact us to guide you through the process.
The 4-H program year runs from October 1 to September 30 every year. You may join in 4-H at any time during the program year by enrolling in the program through 4-H Online. All members, Cloverbuds, and volunteers must re-enroll in 4-H Online each year, starting on October 1.
A 4-H Club is a group of young people that meet regularly, usually once a month, to learn together and build friendships. Clubs are organized by adult volunteer club leaders and include family involvement throughout the year. Clubs provide a safe space for young people to learn, grow, and thrive through hands-on activities and projects, community service events, leadership opportunities, and more!
4-H'ers learn more about a subject matter they choose to study through completing hands-on activities, called projects. The Marion County 4-H program offers more than 60 projects for area youth. Each project has a beginner, intermediate, and advanced level, allowing youth to build on their knowledge each year and continue to challenge their skills.
Do you want a rewarding and fulfilling way to give back to your community? Marion County 4-H is looking for consistent and dedicated individuals to serve as 4-H club leaders and helpers, and in other roles within the program. We rely heavily on caring adults to deliver positive youth development experiences to our youth. Whether you are a 4-H newbie or long-time member, we need your time and talents to make a difference in the lives of young people in Marion County!
Cloverbuds (or Mini 4-H) are 4-H programs for youth in grades K-2. Cloverbuds is geared towards activity-based learning and age-appropriate curriculum. Most Marion County 4-H clubs offer Cloverbud programming.
The 4-H program year runs from October 1 to September 30 every year. From October to June, clubs meet and county-wide events are held, such as project workshops and our annual Holiday Bake-off. The Marion County 4-H Showcase is held in July. Showcase is our annual celebration of the work 4-H members have completed throughout the year.
To learn about upcoming county-wide events and programs, sign up for our newsletter and announcements or follow us on social media!
There’s no place like summer camp! Marion County 4-H'ers in grades 3-6 gather with other neighboring counties for a 3-day camp experience at Shakamak State Park near Jasonville, IN each summer. 4-H camp packs loads of fun into a short time - swimming, boating, hiking, making crafts, doing leadership activities, learning about 4-H, and the list goes on and on!
Our 4-H Design & Innovation Studio, located in the 16 Tech Innovation District in downtown Indianapolis, provides low- and no-cost STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, & Mathematics) educational experiences for youth in grades K-12 that are designed to meet the unique needs of our diverse community and urban landscape.
Indiana 4-H'ers have the ability to receive funding to pursue post-secondary education or career goals by applying for one (or more!) scholarships. Each year, the Indiana 4-H Youth Development Program in partnership with the Indiana 4-H Foundation awards more than $125,000 in scholarships to young people around the state who can showcase their accomplishments and the skills they have learned through their time in 4-H.
State and national 4-H experiences provide the opportunity for 4-H teens to expand their horizons beyond their home community. During these programs led by 4-H volunteers and Purdue University staff and faculty, participants dive deep into various subjects, develop leadership skills, make friends from around the state and country, and more.