WASHINGTON — USDA’s national 4-H headquarters and NASA sent the 4-H flag, depicting the familiar 4-H clover, into space aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour June 13 as part of the STS-127 mission.
4-H promotes positive youth development, facilitates learning and engages youth in the work of the land-grant universities and USDA to enhance their quality of life.
Nearly 7 million youth, 5-19, participate in 4-H youth development experiences in all 50 states, territories and military installations worldwide.
The STS-127 mission delivered the final components of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency’s Kibo laboratory to the International Space Station. The 16-day mission included five spacewalks and the installation of two platforms outside of the Japanese module.
Azeem Ahmed, 17, who is an avid space enthusiast and 4-H member from Alabama and President of the Alabama 4-H Council, made the original request to NASA to have the flag flown with a future space shuttle mission.
Ahmed has been a 4-H member for seven years. He has participated in a variety of leadership and science, engineer and technology programs on the state and national level and wants people to see 4-H as he and thousands of other youth do.
The 4-H Youth Development Program began at the start of the 20th century to help rural youth gain technical and leadership skills.
More than 100 years later, the organization continues to promote positive youth development in the areas of citizenship; healthy living and science; engineering and technology.
According to a two-year study in New York, young people who participate in 4-H clubs do better in school, are more motivated to help others, develop skills in leadership, public speaking, self-esteem, communication and planning and make lasting friendships.
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