Applying research, knowledge, and resources to meet the issues and needs of Washington County.
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Upcoming Events

Join us each month for a different Conversation Corner topic! 4-H Educators Tracy, Jayna, and Amy invite all 4-H club and project leaders from Fond du Lac, Ozaukee and Washington Counties to join them for these one-hour (optional) Zooms. These conversations are an opportunity for leaders to ask the Educators questions, brainstorm with other leaders, and share ideas!

Our October topic is “The Wisconsin 4-H Movement.” We are offering several days/times. Click Here to Register now for one of these sessions!

  • October 7th, 1-2pm
  • October 13th, 6-7pm
  • October 29th, 10-11am
Attend a free, peer learning session Thursday, October 22nd, 12:00 noon–1:00 pm led by Paul Roback, Professor & Community Development Educator for Washington County Extension. This pop-up session will include:
  • Discussion on elements of a high functioning board of directors
  • Review of legal requirements and best practices for boards.
  • Exploration of board member roles & responsibilities, effective board meeting practices, and tools for high functioning
Click Here to Learn More & Register.
The Virtual Farm Management Update: Dairy Markets & Nutrition for the Year Ahead will be held Thursday, October 22nd at 1:00pm, Zoom CST (registration required). Click Here to register
Youth interested in being a 4-H officer this year are invited to attend this year's virtual officer training! Youth from Calumet, Fond du Lac, Ozaukee, Sheboygan, and Washington county will be coming together virtually for this training! Please join us for either of the following dates:
  • October 29th 6-8 pm
  • November 10th 6-8pm
Click Here to register online at least one week prior to the session you wish to attend.
Welcome Kelly Hackett, Nutrition Coordinator: FoodWise


Kelly Hackett

           We welcome Kelly Hackett as the new Nutrition Coordinator: FoodWise for UW-Madison Division of Extension, Washington County. Kelly will be working with the community partners to bring nutrition education opportunities to youth and adults.
          Kelly brings over eight years of experience in community engagement and the development and implementation of responsive, evidence-based health programs. She has served as a Program Director at a start-up study abroad company in rural Panama, worked as a Research Program Coordinator at the Medical College of Wisconsin managing public health research programs and funding awards pre to post, and during her Master of Public Health Program, was a part of a team recommending an evidence-based initiative addressing food insecurity in rural, aging, and immigrant populations; resulting in the creation of a mobile farmer’s market that was later picked up by Southwestern Wisconsin Community Action Program & implemented across four additional Wisconsin counties.
          If you asked Kelly what the greatest piece of advice she has ever been given, she would respond “Never stop looking for good ways to make yourself uncomfortable”.  We invite you to welcome Kelly to Washington County!!
Facilitating for the City of West Bend

Community Development

Paul Roback

          The mayor of the City of West Bend contacted Paul to facilitate a process to create a set of decision-making filters that align with the values of the West Bend community, the purpose of government operations, and the desired future the City wants to achieve.  In order to achieve this objective, it was first necessary to create concise mission and vision statements for the City.  
          As a result of a meeting with 15 government officials and citizens that Paul facilitated, 91% agreed that discussing the mission statement helped clarify their focus as an organization and that discussing the vision statement assisted them in understanding the general direction for their organization’s future.  Participants evaluated Paul’s overall facilitation as a 4.7 on a 5-point Likert Scale (1=poor and 5=excellent).
          After the session, Paul facilitated a separate meeting with 13 City department heads to obtain their input into the draft statements and planning process.  Paul is currently working with City officials to refine the draft statements, draft the decision-making filters, and compile a report for the Common Council.
Conversation Corners for 4-H Leaders

4-H Youth Development

Amy Mangan-Fischer

          Washington County 4-H groups are now meeting both in-person and virtually! Youth and adult 4-H leaders are meeting to plan the 2020-2021 4-H year, set goals for their groups, discuss community service possibilities, and more! 4-H volunteers and leaders are thinking creatively to continue providing youth development opportunities for young people.
          To support adult leaders, Amy Mangan-Fischer and two other area 4-H Program Educators, held Conversation Corners around the topic of returning to in-person programming. Participants learned how to safely hold in-person events and the process for having events approved. 100% of participants strongly agreed that the topic was relevant and timely and 100% agreed or strongly agreed that the discussion increased their understanding of the topic.
          Future Conversation Corners will be held monthly on topics relevant to this unique year. 100% of September participants agreed or strongly agreed that they would attend a future Conversation Corner. The topic in October will be the 4-H Movement in honor of National 4-H week!
Developing Youth Leadership Virtually

Positive Youth Development

Ron Jakubisin

          Planning meetings with Boys/Girls Club of Washington Co. for workshop series for B/G Club youth. Three sessions approved to be delivered (virtually) in October to youth at West Bend, Kewaskum and Hartford club sites. This also includes a training session for staff prior to youth workshops.
          Ron facilitated team building workshop (virtually) for Youth Futures' Youth Committee. As a result, Ron was asked to present a leadership lesson at ALL of the youth committee meetings through December.
          Participated in planning meetings with 4-H Educator for content in upcoming 4-H Youth Officer’s Training. Ron will present also at these trainings. Networking Mtgs. for programming needs/updates/covid strategies include: Regional Tobacco Control grant manager and state Extension Positive Youth Development admin & colleagues.
          Jakubisin attended professional development workshops: ‘Developmental Relationships, Equitable Environments, and Social Emotional Learning are the Three Things Young People Need Right Now’.
Building Financial Security with Head Start Families

Human Development & Relationships

Carol Bralich

          Family Financial Capability: The Money $mart in Head Start program (M$iHS) with Washington County Head Start has completed 8 years of the program. In the 2019-20 school year, Head Start families (116) receive an easy-to-read Extension two page newsletter with a financial topic sent home with their child each month, including topics such as, money goals, spending plans and credit. Carol conducted a post-survey with Head Start families in March of 2020, however, due to the COVID-19 pandemic and school closures, very few surveys were returned. Five parents attended the November 2019 financial well being workshop.
          In July of 2020, Carol met with the Head Start family advocates to structure the newsletter distribution electronically for the 2020-21 school year, to ensure that parents received them whether school was open or closed. In addition, a financial workshop is being planned for the fall of 2020 for parents to learn strategies to help cope with financial impacts of COVID-19. Carol continues to serve as a member of the Head Start Policy Council, providing input and resources for Head Start parents and staff.
Providing Tools to Help Manage a Farm's Forage Inventory


Steph Plaster

          The Eastern WI Farm Management Update is held in May and September each year and is co-chaired by Stephanie.  The fall update is being held monthly via zoom from September through December.  September’s session was focused on the Eastern WI Forage Update.  Three Extension speakers spoke on fall forage management decisions, feed inventory and quality after corn silage harvest, and making decision for 2021: planting after corn silage harvest.  Thirty-eight people logged on to the webinar, and eleven participants who were not available to watch it live viewed the recording.
          As a result of attending this meeting, participants (n=17) felt they now have the tools to help them better understand how to manage their farm's/client's forage inventory (+4.3 based on a 5 pt Likert scale where 1 = strongly disagree and 5 = strongly agree), and they also indicated they feel more confident in their forage management decisions for their farm/clients (+4.3).  Participants agreed this was a good use of their time (+4.4).
As part of the UW-Madison Division of Extension, we provide knowledge and resources to engage people and their communities in positive change where they live and work.
An EEO/AA employer, University of Wisconsin-Madison Division of Extension provides equal opportunities in employment and programming including Title VI, Title IX, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act requirements

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