Not just cows and cookies

Sarah Kate Smith at a 4-H conference in Ottawa. Photo Supplied.

From showing lambs to speaking at international conferences, Sara Kate Smith, 18, is a versatile and passionate person with a knack for helping others.

Since joining the Yellowhead 4-H club in Barriere, B.C. at the age of seven she has found ways to give back and improve the lives of other members and the greater community.

Having just graduated from the International Baccalaureate program at NorKam Secondary in Kamloops, she is currently a 4-H ambassador and is working towards a place on the national youth advisory committee while preparing to attend the University of British Columbia in the fall.

On Canada Day she was awarded an MP Youth Award by Cathy McLeod for her volunteer work in B.C. and beyond.

One of the reasons she was selected was her founding of a three day conference for 4-H members called Speak Out Loud.

Delegates were coached on public speaking, job interviews, resumes, personal branding, social media and more. All are passions of Smith’s, who believes in their great importance to success.

“In rural areas like Barriere it’s harder for youth to find those opportunities to prepare for a career,” Smith said. “It was such a pleasure to watch them learn and grow.”

Smith also presented a Ted-X talk in 2016 on the importance of millennials in agriculture and succession planning for family farms.

Those public speaking talents are now taking her farther afield to places like Washington, DC, and to Ottawa for the Global 4-H Network Summit in July.

Smith said she was able to connect with delegates from clubs around the world and has
since been invited to speak at clubs in the United States.

In her free time she skied for the Sun Peaks Alpine Club and coached for the Nancy Greene Ski League last winter. She also played for NorKam’s provincial championship winning women’s rugby team.

While she is now looking towards a bright and busy future, Smith said she wants to stay involved and won’t be forgetting 4-H anytime soon.

“I think 4-H was a very key component to any sort of success that I’ve had,” she said. “It’s not just cows and cookies, it’s leadership and public service.

“I can’t recommend it highly enough.”

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