Approximately 1,000 4-H delegates from across the nation gather in Atlanta, Georgia for National 4-H Congress each November. Illinois is represented by teens each year as the Illinois 4-H Foundation provides award trips to our 30 State 4-H Award Winners to this national event.
National 4-H Congress offers states an opportunity to send outstanding 4-H youth to this event and provide them with an expanded educational experience through seminars, community service projects, and tours sponsored by local and national 4-H program donors. All Congress delegates participate in special cultural programs such as an International Dinner & Dance and a night at the Atlanta History Center. Other educational experiences during National 4-H Congress include delegate participation in workshops focusing on cultural differences, team leadership development, and the power of youth. Delegates may also take advantage of tours around Atlanta, including CNN, the Georgia World Congress Center, Turner Field, Cyclorama, The Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and more.
Throughout the year, over 260,000 University of Illinois Extension 4-H Youth Development participants can receive recognition for their work at the local, county and state level. County nominations for curriculum area winners are sent to the state selection process in January to begin an intense selection process that includes application judging, 4-H story judging and interviews. The process helps judges select the top 4-H members in various curriculum areas. Many of these winners are selected for a trip to this national event. For more information on the Illinois 4-H Award process, click on Recognition, Awards, and Scholarships of the Member section on this website.
National 4-H Congress is conducted by Cooperative Extension Service staff on behalf of the Cooperative Extension System of the state land-grant universities and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service.