Being a Volunteer
Our volunteers are a key part of the 4-H Youth Development Program.
By volunteering, you are helping to grow the skills of 4-H youth to be our future leaders.
Ways you can volunteer
Volunteering in 4-H is flexible and rewarding. Share your expertise and experience with the youth and other volunteers to make things happen!
All 4-H adults volunteers must apply and be appointed annually.
Process to become a new 4-H Adult Volunteer
1. Find a 4-H Club
See our list of clubs to find one near you. You can also contact Cheryl Fraser, Alameda County 4-H Program Representative, firstname.lastname@example.org or 510-670-5639 in the Alameda County Extension office for help in finding clubs near you to start the process of becoming a volunteer. Contact the club leader to learn more about the volunteer opportunities available.
2. Screening Process
All new 4-H volunteers must go through a screening process. Our #1 priority in 4-H is the safety of young people. We do all we can to protect young people and keep them safe while they are in our care. When you become a 4-H volunteer, you are port of the plan to keep our young people safe.
1. Complete the 4-H Volunteer Interest Survey in English or Spanish
2. Create a family profile and add yourself as an adult on 4honline. If you already have a family profile, because you have enrolled youth members, then add yourself to that profile.
Please make sure the Family email address in the 4honline system is correct and one you check regularly. This email will be used for most communications and to confirm your volunteer application.
For Spanish: The 4honline system is only in English. You may fill in the paper enrollment packet in Spanish and turn it in to your club leader or county staff for them to enter it into 4honline for you. Please keep a copy of the paper forms for your records.
3. Complete a California Department of Justice Live Scan background check.
An important part of providing a safe environment is to conduct background checks on our volunteers and staff. Everyone that will be spending an extended time with our 4-H youth is screened.
3. New Volunteer Training
All 4-H adult volunteers are required to complete online training courses in eXtension in order to volunteer with 4-H youth. The eXtension training sessions are interactive and most volunteers have no problems accessing and completing the training.If you have an older computer or low internet bandwidthThe State 4-H Office will facilitate training in a Zoom session, an online system that allows video conferencing, for those who have computers with older operating systems or low internet bandwidth. We will offer multiple Zoom-based sessions from July to November.Zoom participants need to INDIVIDUALLY pre-register online at least 1 day prior to the desired training date using the links for the session. Participants must stay on the webinar for the entire session in order to complete the training.Click here for a list of the webinar dates and times and their registration links.
- After you complete and submit your 4honline profile you, you will receive an automated message with the eXtension login instructions. The email will go to the Family email account you entered in 4hOnline
Beginning 4-H for Volunteers
- In addition to the online courses, all new 4-H volunteers are required to take the Beginning 4-H for Volunteers Orientation before they become approved as volunteers. Register for a Beginning 4-H for Volunteers orientation. Dates for training are 8/18, 9/15, 10/20, 11/17, and 12/15
Live Scan services will be provided at orientations.
The County Director reviews and approves 4-H volunteer appointments after
- You are signed up in the 4hOnline enrollment system.
- You have passed the screening process.
- You have completed the eXtension courses.
- You complete all of the New Volunteer Training required in your county.
Once you are approved, the fun begins! Thank you for joining our 4-H family!
4-H has grown in California because of the dedication of our volunteers. Some of our volunteers have supported 4-H for 10, 20 and 30 years or more!
Re-Apply annually by December 31
All 4-H volunteers must be appointed annually. If you are a current 4-H Adult Volunteer, to continue in the next year you need to re-apply and be re-appointed by December 31st to continue with no break in service.
1 Update your 4hOnline profile.
Log in to 4hOnline to update your profile to enroll for the new year. Please make sure the email address in the system is correct and one you check regularly.
2. Take the Returning Volunteers Training in the online eXtension system.
Your will receive the login information sent to your Family email after you update and submit your 4hOnline profile application for the new year.
3. Receive approval as a 4-H Volunteer.
After all the application requirements and mandatory trainings are completed, the County Director reviews and approves the volunteer appointments.
NOTE: If you have a break in service
You have a break in service if you were not enrolled as a 4-H volunteer the previous year. Please follow the process for New Volunteers when applying.