Future leaders

Twenty members of the West Otter Tail County 4-H participated in the NW BLU retreat. This year the theme of the event was “Unmask Your Inner Leader.”

Minnesota 4-H held the NW BLU (Building Leadership and Understanding) retreat on Feb. 8-9 at the Castaway Club in Detroit Lakes for youth from across the region and the state, including 20 youth from West Otter Tail County.

BLU is an annual leadership retreat offered regionally across Minnesota. This year’s theme, “Unmask Your Inner Leader,” encouraged youth to discuss their strengths, leadership styles, and the characteristics of great leaders. Youth participants engaged in a variety of activities throughout the event, including small and large group discussions, team-building activities, personal awareness experiences, and informational sessions. The leadership retreat was facilitated by youth leaders from the Minnesota 4-H State Ambassador program and supported by a team of adult chaperones.

“The NW BLU leadership retreat was one of five 4-H events offered this winter to Minnesota youth in grades 7-12,”  Sutton Stewart, regional extension educator at the University of Minnesota Extension Center for Youth Development, said. “4-H uses these retreats to help youth learn valuable leadership skills they can apply in their communities and make connections with people from other parts of the state. This year’s workshop also included a service project to collect donations for foster care systems in our part of the state.”

4-H offers leadership and civic engagement experiences throughout the year. To learn more, visit z.umn.edu/4HLeadership.

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