Waupaca County Youth in Governance Programs
Congratulations: Waupaca Healthy Communities/ Healthy Youth work to include youth on city council committees was recognized at the 2006 Wisconsin Community Leadership Summit as one of Wisconsin's top three Rural Development Initiatives:
- UW-Extension provides professional development and evaluation support to service-learning for Waupaca County schools. Successful projects include: 4th graders teaching peers about staying healthy during the H1N1 outbreak, middle school recycling, and the development of a prairie environment at Clintonville High School.
- Youth on Boards includes contributions to decisions in many sectors: executive (youth appointed to 7 city council committees), county cross sectional coalitions (tobacco, nutrition and activity coalition), school (community service committee), 4-H (leaders board), non-profit (trails, triathlon, park foundation, community foundation). City council committees have a spot on their agenda for youth. Expanded space and equipment in library worth $25,000 and youth-initiated programs like a new jail library. Expanded space, equipment and programs at the recreation center for youth (a 3.5 million project).
- After 4-H and CNRED trained 117 Waupaca High School students in land-use planning, three young people are participating actively in each of 2 different township board committees and the county executive committee for the Comprehensive Planning Process. One young person joined a committee drafting a public survey and worked to ensure that youth perspectives will be gathered.
- Waupaca County 4-H Leaders' Board currently includes two youth representatives. A bylaw change was approved in January to include all youth in grades 7 and above as voting members of the larger Leaders' Association, which could be about 150 members. The Expansion and Review sub-committee included three adults and two youth working in partnership. Youth also play active decision-making roles in camp and project committees.
- Waupaca Learning Center 5th grade students, teachers, and community members finished their first year of "Teaming Together to Stop Violence" in which they identified non-violent video games, wrote poems and displated art work and organized a community rally for peace.
- Waupaca County Extension helped four schools receive a service-learning grant through which students and teachers identified projects to address issues including the environment, teen pregnancy, underage drinking, gas prices, and safe places for young people.
For more information: Waupaca County UW-Extension Youth Development