Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station | [Cooperative Extension of Mercer County]

Urban 4-H Afterschool and Summer Programs

Photos of 4-H'ers.

The 4-H Clover. Mercer County 4-H partners with other youth serving organizations to provide several multi-week after-school and summer day camp programs throughout Trenton.

Challenge and Adventure Programs

4-H Afterschool Adventure and 4-H Adventure Camp

4-H Afterschool Adventure is a 12-week challenge and adventure-based program that includes introductory personal development activities (True Colors®, SMART Goal Setting), group initiative activities (teambuilding), outdoor adventure activities (canoeing, horseback riding, indoor rock climbing, and mountain biking), and two sessions on the City of Trenton/4-H Challenge Course. The programming of 4-H Afterschool Adventure is also provided in a summer day camp format.

City of Trenton/4-H Challenge Course

4-H staff provide teambuilding sessions on the City of Trenton/4-H Challenge Course (12 low elements). Sessions are available for youth and adult groups. Training and certification is also provided to youth workers wishing to utilize the course.

Horses and Youth (HAY)

4-H partners with the Mercer County Equestrian Center to provide Horses and Youth (HAY). HAY is a 6-week after-school program and a one-week summer day camp for Trenton youth, ages 9-14. Youth receive personal riding lessons, learn about horses and their care, and participate in various barn chores. The summer program includes a trail ride. All programs culminate in a competition using a riding course that the youth design. HAY is generously funded by the Dorothy E. Katz Hopewell Valley Reading and Recreation Fund of the Princeton Area Community Foundation.

4-H SET (Science, Engineering, and Technology)

4-H 4-REEL Digital Filmmaking

4-H 4-REEL is a 10-12 week after-school digital filmmaking program. Teams of youth utilize the digital camcorders and laptop computers in the 4-H Mobile Technology Lab (MTL) to create short films (interview, documentary, performance, positive message, instructional). Each year, twenty teams from four after-school sites participate in the program. The program ends in a screening of the films and a recognition trip to NYC to tour the Museum of the Moving Image, Sony Wonder Technology Lab, and NBC Studios.

Design It! and Explore It!

4-H uses the Design It! and Explore It! curricula during after-school time to spark an interest in engineering design and science among students, ages 8-13. For those interested in training for staff at your site, visit Design It and Explore it! for more information.

Rutgers 4-H Summer Science Program

Mercer County 4-H is coordinating the second annual Rutgers 4-H Summer Science Program. Ten freshmen from Trenton will join youth from Camden, Hackensack, Newark, and Paterson for a week on Rutgers' G. H. Cook Campus in July. The high school youth will learn about animal, environmental, food, and marine science from Rutgers professors in the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences. The youth will also be trained as science ambassadors and will return to their home communities ready to promote opportunities available in the sciences.

Healthy Living

Get Moving Get Healthy HIP HOP Dance Crew

Forty youth from two after-school sites participate in the 10-12 week Get Moving Get Healthy HIP HOP Dance Crew program each year. The youth learn about proper nutrition and physical activity during each session before they spend time choreographing and practicing their hip hop dance routines. The program culminates in a dance showcase. The highest scoring teams win a trip to Philadelphia to enjoy a professional dance performance.

Trenton Food and Fitness Ambassadors

Twenty Trenton teenagers are recruited each year to become Food and Fitness Ambassadors. They are trained using the Get Moving Get Healthy (GMGH) curriculum at a two-day overnight retreat. Once trained, they plan and implement GMGH events for children at collaborating after-school and summer programs throughout the city.

Collaborators include:

For more information about Urban Programming, contact Miss Harmon at 609-989-6833 or

For more information about Summer Programming, contact the 4-H Office, 609-989-6833