Arkansas Land and Farm Development Corporation (ALFDC) will partner with Cooperative Extension Service and local school districts to design a model youth development program that builds development assets in vulnerable children and incorporates experiences that lead to racial healing and increased cross-racial interaction. ALFDC will then recruit local community-based and faith-based groups to sponsor both Junior (9-13 year olds) and Senior (14-19 year olds) 4-H clubs. Importantly, the adult volunteer club leaders will receive extensive training in youth development and racial healing.
The proposed Black and White Exploring Green program will organize a minimum of 15 racially integrated 4-H Clubs that will have youth, ages 9 to 19, focus on developing interracial leadership, citizenship, and entrepreneurship skills while exploring occupations and entrepreneurial opportunities in renewable energy, green building construction trades, sustainable horticultural and livestock enterprises and operation and management of cooperatives. Throughout the program, youth will engage in activities designed to promote racial healing and the development of increased comfort with each other. Youth will also receive assistance in identifying career interests and opportunities and be supported in pursuing educational and career goals.