Trying to build agriculture’s future in Carroll County

Carroll County attempted to pass two OSU Extension levies in 2010. We are not sure why both levies failed, but we are sure there are many different reasons why. We all know about the slow down, turn down, slump or whatever you want to call it in the economy. We call it a reality check.

So whatever the reason, now is the time we all need to work together to get Extension and 4-H back in Carroll County. This is why Carroll Soil and Water Conservation District has offered the OSU Extension office space and use of our office equipment.

Bryan Burgett, SWCD board chairperson, Vernon Cummings, treasurer, and Linda Yeager, district administrator, went to Carroll County Commissioner Tom Wheaton to gauge his support. Tom felt it was worth a try and contacted OSU.

We all felt we needed more community input and support, so we contacted the junior and senior fair boards, some 4-H advisers, FFA teachers, and other concerned citizens of the county. We were searching to see if this was something the community was willing to support.

Community support

We convened a meeting for a Sunday evening on very short notice, but we had about 30 people show up. It is the first meeting we ever attended where a person showed up and asked if he could attend. This is great, that a person had that much interest and commitment to this issue to step up to the plate.

This is what we need everyone to do — to contribute what they can, whether it is time, ideas, or money. Don’t sit around and say ‘I wasn’t invited,’ show up and say ‘I want to contribute.’

Carroll SWCD has been doing some of the agricultural education programs in the county, but having an Extension ag educator in the county and the OSU array of expertise around the state available to us, would expand these programs.

The 4-H programs will be able to grow with the collaboration of all agencies and more community involvement.

Moving forward

To make this program work we must all move ahead and work together. We cannot worry about the past; this has to be about the future.

Agriculture is the number one industry in Carroll County and Ohio, so we owe our children the best agriculture education available to continue and improve this industry.

Carroll SWCD is pursuing this project to ensure long-term sustainability for agriculture education in Carroll County. We hope to expand everyone’s programs including Soil and Water, 4-H, FFA , the grazing council, cattlemen’s association, dairy boosters and Farm Bureau.

Everyone needs collaboration; this is the only way agriculture can continue to grow and prosper. So let’s all work together to get this project started and keep it moving forward.

The committee is looking for tax deductible donations toward this project please make your check out to OSU Foundation and send them to Carroll SWCD, 613 N. High St. Carrollton, OH 44615.

About the Author

Linda Yeager has lived in Carroll County all her life. She has been with the Carroll SWCD since 2001 where she serves as the district administrator. More Stories by Linda Yeager

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