There are few things as exciting to watch as when a young person finds a spark that lights his or her imagination on fire.  There are wide eyes, rapid questions, a desire to try, to learn, to try again.  That SPARK is the start of an amazing future.

Illinois 4-H Foundation donors help provide these SPARKS.  Through philanthropic contributions, new programs are given life, resources are made available, and youth have new experiences.  These gifts help ignite the imagination of youth across the state. 

We hope you feel the SPARKS highlighted in the stories of this year's CloverSeed Impact Report. 

Our 4-H Impact in 2022

Group of teenagers shooting with bows

Building Youth Self-Discipline And Focus


Nearly 302,000 hunting licenses are sold in Illinois annually. A hunting-related shooting incident is defined as an occurrence when a person is injured as the result of the discharge of a sporting arm while hunting or trapping. Often these incidents result from failing to follow...

Boy filming

Creating Pathways For Careers


Employers say many new employees lack basic skills to be productive in the workforce. Lack of available workers challenge the economic viability of families, businesses, and communities across Illinois. Some youth lack knowledge of preparing a personal budget and managing...

Girl shaking hands with man

Developing Tomorrow's Leaders


Organizations lack leaders skilled in strategic planning, change management, idea sharing, listening, and emotional intelligence. This skill and knowledge gap impacts all industries.


For many 4-H members, the leadership path starts in their local club,...

4-H teens meet with politician

Empowering Youth Governance


Cities and towns lack financial support for efforts that would enhance the community. Youth lack understanding of how governments work and how to advocate for change. Youth need opportunities to practice generosity and philanthropy. In order for youth to succeed in the 21st...

Man and 4-H member stand with cases of food

Expanding Food Access


More than 1.9 million Illinois residents do not have regular access to nutritious food. One in five residents experience hunger weekly. More than 270,000 Illinoisans live in food deserts. These numbers are expected to worsen due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Access to...

girls teaching zoom cooking class

Inspiring Healthy Living


Tobacco, alcohol, and drug use is a national dilemma, with an estimated 23.9 million Americans age 12 and older having used an illicit drug or misused a prescription drug. Illinois deaths attributed to opioid use has increased 44.3% since 2013.


Illinois 4...

2 girls flying a drone

Inspiring Innovation


A vital STEM workforce is needed to drive innovation in today’s global world. Workers lack skills in problem solving, design, programming, scientific inquiry, investigation, independent thinking, and teamwork.


Illinois 4-H is empowering youth to be the...

girl riding zipline

Inspiring Outdoor Appreciation


Young people need more access tonature for better psychological functioning and better physical health.


4-H camping takes place around the state. 4-H Memorial Camp accommodates the largest group of campers with 8,500 visitors over 190 days of use in a...

Man and boy taking care of a sheep

Producing Safe Food


The world population will surpass 9 billion people by 2050, creating higher demand for food, water, productive land, and environmentally-safe practices. Producers are faced with many challenges, such as food safety, regulations, consumer attitudes, sustainability, and...

Girl fishing off dock

Stewarding Environmental Issues


The world’s growing population is putting increased demands on our limited natural resources changing the earth’s climate and future environmental health.


Illinois 4-H youth are learning about the environment through fun activities involving solar and...