4-H Alumni Q&A: Reana Bye
Former Washoe County 4-H Youth Development participant
Reana Bye has been volunteering at the 4-H Youth Development Camp Program in various leadership positions after attending the program as a youth. Photo by Reana Bye.
Question: As a youth, how did you participate in 4-H? What clubs, camps or activities were you involved in?
Answer: I was part of the Washoe County 4-H Program from the time I was 9 to my senior year. I did everything possible, but the biggest programs I participated in were the 4-H Horse Program and livestock – we raised market lambs. Apart from that, though, my mom started a sewing and crafting club for us, and I went to the 4-H camp up in Lake Tahoe as an actual camper, a teen and then as an adult chaperone. As I got older, I had the opportunity to go to 4-H Congress, and I ended up working at the state office while I was at the University.
Question: Looking back on your experiences in 4-H, what do you think you learned from these experiences that benefited you the most throughout your life?
Answer: 4-H, for me, gave me so much more than I ever could’ve imagined. There are very prominent goals that teach you citizenship and hard work and record-keeping. I think, along with that, were the families and people that we were surrounded with that made the biggest difference in my life. When you have people like Sarah Chvilicek or Joni Test, who give their whole lives to these youth, it gives you the opportunity to see what great leadership is like. I had the opportunity to be around people who really made me understand that no matter what I do in my life, I want to make sure I’m there for other kids and to ensure the continuation of these programs. When you’re learning the formal things like how to take care of your animals, it’s great, but it’s really the underlying messages of hard work, dedication and helping others that made it one of the most invaluable experiences of my life.