UF to Pilot 4-H Life Ready Program

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The University of Florida is piloting the Life Ready Program through IFAS Extension’s Alachua County 4-H youth development office. The Life Ready program is run in partnership with the Sheriff’s Office, born out of a conversation by Dr. Gutter,  the State Program Leader for 4-H Youth Development, Families & Communities, and Alachua County Sheriff, Sadie Darnell.

With similar goals in mind, 4-H and the Sheriff’s office aims to reach teens who are otherwise slipping through the cracks to provide them with the resources necessary to succeed after high school.  Targeting involvement from at-risk high school juniors and seniors, Life Ready teaches students life and career skills during their weekly lunchtime meetings.  The Life Ready Program guides and equips students through mentoring, experiential learning, networking, and skill development.  This program is an example of collaboration between county organizations.

 The program has already seen success in the form of the student’s eager engagement in the program. When given an opportunity to interact with professionals and potential employers, the students have taken initiative and pursued both volunteering and educational prospects.

In response to the student’s request for training in financial management, the Life Ready program is pleased to host the successful Living On My Own (LOMO) financial simulation in January of 2018. For the simulation, students will be assigned a career and salary, as well as family and life situation, such as married with one child. They will be provided with a fake debit card and checkbook and told to purchase services at all of the 12 booths present. The types of exchanges the students will be expected to make include expenses such as childcare, groceries, leasing a car, renting or purchasing a home, as well as spending some money at the mall, and giving to a charity.

To make this event a success we need volunteers who can interact with the students at the various stations, helping them to make the necessary purchases.  If you are interested in volunteering at this event please contact lcorley@ufl.edu .  Looking forward to partnering with you to Make the Best Better!

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