Start a Club

Nebraska 4-H and 4-H National Headquarters define a 4-H club as an organized group of at least five youth from three different families who meet regularly with adult volunteers or staff for a long-term, progressive series of educational experiences.

WHAT YOU NEED:

The Basics

At least 5 youth members from at least 3 different families. The club members must also select youth officers to provide leadership to the club.

An adult club leader. Club leaders may be either a 4-H staff member or volunteer. Volunteers must be screened and trained through their local Extension office.

A place or means to meet. Clubs must meet at least 6 times throughout the year, either face-t0-face or virtually. Clubs meeting face-to-face may meet in any location, including members' homes, community center, military installation, library, public housing site, or school. Many clubs hold 9-12 meetings throughout most or all of the year, and often supplement with project meetings, camps, fairs, and other 4-H learning activities.

Constitution & Bylaws

4-H Clubs must function formally through a constitution and by-laws. These are organizing documents of a club and describe how the club operates. A current copy of the club Constitution and Bylaws must be kept on file in the county Extension office. Download the 4-H Club Constitution and Bylaws template below to get started. The Constitution and Bylaws Template is a guide used to assist Nebraska 4-H Clubs with providing structure around the Club's name/identity; mission and purpose; membership; officers' duties and terms; meetings, fiscal operations; use of club revenue; and dissolution.

Constitution & Bylaws Template

Club Charter

4-H Clubs must be chartered by 4-H National Headquarters at the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Nebraska state 4-H office in order to be recognized as part of 4-H, and to be authorized to use the 4-H Name and Emblem. The Nebraska state 4-H office will maintain documentation of the issuance of Charters to 4-H entities within Nebraska. See Charter Club Application below for more information.

When a new 4-H club is formed in Nebraska, the 4-H volunteer leader or other person in charge of the 4-H unit must complete the Request for Official Approval for Establishment of New 4-H Unit and Club Charter. Completion of this form provides the 4-H club permission to use the 4-H Name and Emblem. Download the form below to get started.

Request Official Establishment of New 4-H Club Form

The completed form can be mailed to:
State 4-H Program Administrator
114 Agriculture Hall
UNL/East Campus
Lincoln, NE 68583-0700

Or faxed to:
State 4-H Program Administrator
402-472-9024.

Club Name

Any organization that functions for the purpose of furthering 4-H objectives and programs and has been formally authorized to use the 4-H name and emblem by the appropriate representative of the Cooperative Extension Service must have names that:

  • Club names are specific to the 4-H club or organization either through a unique name or by identifying the county or location. Examples: Share-N-Win 4-H Club (unique name); Calvert County 4-H Horse Club (generic name with county);
  • Club names are not overtly religious or represent the beliefs of one denomination over another;
  • Do not imply that membership is limited or exclusive; and,
  • Clubs names are not offensive or generally seen as demeaning to any group protected by equal opportunity regulations.
  • Refer to the 4-H National Headquarters Fact Sheet, Naming 4-H Clubs, for further information.

Also see Section 8: 4-H Club Standards of the Nebraska 4-H Policy & Procedures Handbook for more information.