4-H Youth Fight Food Insecurity

Date posted: Friday 30 July 2021

Blogger Vernita Kennen during her own 4-H days.

An April news item from the University of Minnesota about 4-H and their work to end hunger caught my attention quickly. I am a 4-H alumna, having been a member of the Highlanders in Chisago County growing up. I could easily relate to the words of the 4-H pledge which began the article.


"'I pledge my hands to larger service…' is not just part of the 4-H pledge but a practice that Minnesota 4-H youth integrate into their daily lives.” The article shared information on some local 4-H efforts around the state which were funded by Compeer Financial. The 4-H youth partnered with local food shelves and nutrition organizations during this unusual pandemic time. Hopefully this is only the beginning of partnerships involving youth and communities in need. See some examples below and then consider how your congregation’s youth or other youth groups in your community might be involved in working to end hunger.


  • I learned about 4-H members in Rice County who set up donation boxes in Northfield and Dundas, and then informed the community about their project by doing radio interviews, posting flyers, and using social media. Donations went to the Northfield Community Action Center.
  • A 4-H club in Chisago County worked in partnership with Viking Vittles, a food assistance program based in North Branch that helps provide nutritious food to children when schools are closed. They helped with drop-off sites, a new logo, flyers and stickers.
  • A 4-H Free Little Pantry Project came about in Dakota County after the only local grocery store in Farmington closed in 2019. Youth and adults assembled the pantries together. Dakota County worked with the youth in determining locations where these free pantries would be most needed.
  • In Meeker County 4-H members took on an awareness campaign to help community members know about availability and access to the local food shelf. Informative posters were designed, printed and hung throughout the community.


-Vernita Kennen

Incarnation, Shoreview


Read more of Vernita's posts at https://spas-elca.org/category/blog/addressing-hunger/.