About

WSU Extension’s Youth and Families programs improve the capacity of young people to be successful while strengthening their families to support healthy development.

Our 4-H Youth Development Program is the largest youth-serving organization in the state engaging almost 80,000 youth annually with educational programs leading to acquisition of critical life skills, reduced risk of dangerous behaviors, increased educational attainment, and enhanced citizenship skills. 4-H has placed renewed educational investments into increasing the science, engineering and technology skills of young people. In addition, our programs reach out to the daughters and sons of deployed military personnel to help them cope with family stresses and disruption of the family unit.

Our family programs strengthen relationships between parents and their children in order to prevent and reduce the incidence of substance abuse and other risk behaviors. Our educators also work to understand and reduce the impacts of complex child trauma including parental neglect, emotional abuse, and physical abuse – one in three youth are exposed to these factors. Our educators work closely with WSU researchers to identify ways reduce these traumas and help schools and other institutions to more effectively deal with affected youth.