Young Leaders Committee offers Young Agriculturalists a Multitude of Volunteer Opportunities
Through the decades of the Cook County Farm Bureau®, working with young members has been an important part of bringing fresh ideas and vitality to the organization.
The Young Leader Committee provides opportunities for younger members to learn more about the organization and participate in programs and activities to benefit themselves and other members.
In 2013, the Board of Directors approved an action plan to develop and activate a Young Leaders Committee with the goal of attracting younger (under age 35) agricultural and agriculture related professionals to the Farm Bureau to involve these members in Farm Bureau activities, programs, teams, and leadership. The idea was to blend service to agriculture, leadership development, and fellowship with teambuilding fun activities into a group of agricultural professionals under the Farm Bureau umbrella.
The result has been a group of young professionals involved in farming and agriculturally related careers who developed service projects, supported agriculture literacy efforts, hosted fun group activities, and honed leadership skills. In recent years, this group of young professionals has hosted activities for members and families including cookouts, recruitment events, and activities at area attractions. Past leadership activities include “adopting” a third-grade classroom in Bedford Park, assisting with Ag Literacy Team activities, competing in the Illinois Farm Bureau® Young Leaders Discussion Meets, promoting consumer outreach activities at Summer Nights at Brookfield Zoo, and supporting social media outreach activities. The group has also participated in numerous charitable activities including packing food at Feed My Starving Children and volunteering at the Greater Chicagoland Food Depository as well as hosting a holiday teen toy drive to benefit Toybox Connection and hosting a holiday coat, hat, and gloves donation drive for Together We Cope.
Young leader committees and groups have been a wonderful incubator for the development of strong, lifetime friendships, organizational leadership skills, and service to agriculture. Consistently, young leader members have focused on building something of worth, value, and meaning for farming and Cook County Farm Bureau. Individuals interested in learning more about the Young Leader Committee should contact Bona Heinsohn at [email protected].