2017 Vance County Plan of Work

Approved: February 16, 2017

I. County Background

Vance County is a rural county north of Raleigh on the Virginia-North Carolina border. The county seat, Henderson, has an active downtown with main street businesses, county and city government buildings, and residences. The county is rural in character with over 50,000 acres of farmland and about 96,000 acres of timberland, most of which is privately owned. It is home to Kerr Lake, a popular outdoor recreational area, and enjoys the benefit of a major transportation artery, Interstate 85.

Agriculture is a significant contributor to the county economy. According to the NC Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, farm cash receipts totaled over $17,997,000 in 2011. In addition, timber landowners were paid $2.2 million stumpage value with $3.9 million in delivered value (Source: NCSU Extension Forestry).

Vance County is considered economically depressed. According to the 2010 census, 32.3% of Vance County residents live in poverty, which is double the NC average of 16.2%. About 39% of the population resides in rental housing and fifty-five percent of total births are to teen moms. According to the Vance County Schools food service director, 89% of public school children receive free or reduced-priced meals.

This environment of assets and needs provides rich opportunity for Cooperative Extension programming, and Vance County Extension focuses on connecting Extension’s educational resources with county needs. Agricultural production and marketing practices will target maximizing profits for commercial producers, people with small farms, and forest landowners. Training will be provided to pesticide applicators and agricultural waste operators that will help protect Vance County’s abundant environmental resources. Work will continue on developing the Voluntary Agricultural District program, which helps to retain land in agriculture. Master Gardener volunteers will disseminate recommended plant growing methods to homeowners and youth through the 4-H/Master Gardener school enrichment program. Local foods will be available to consumers via farmers’ markets.

Vance County has a number of limited resource and disadvantaged farmers, along with farmers wanting to establish new small farm operations. Cooperative Extension programming will focus on farm business management and on production methods for small farms. This will include incorporating newer technologies on small farms to extend the growing season and programs on decreasing production costs, controlling pests, and increasing profitability on small farms.

4-H youth development efforts will strengthen and expand school enrichment opportunities such as drug prevention and Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) programs. Community clubs, 4-H Teen Council, 4-H camp, presentation competition, and special interest programs will serve to teach youth leadership, citizenship, decision-making and other essential life skills.

Family and Consumer Sciences programs will target parenting skills by implementing Parenting Matters and the Incredible Years. Chronic disease prevention will be addressed by creating a close working relationship with the Family and Consumer Science agent and the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program Assistant (EFNEP). EFNEP will offer informative, hands-on nutrition classes to limited resource youth and adults with parenting responsibilities. The consumption and preservation of local foods will be encouraged. The Vance County Extension and Community Association will partner with Cooperative Extension to disseminate information on health, resource management, and emergency preparedness.

Vance County Extension staff conducted an environmental scan including mail surveys, telephone surveys, one-on-one interviews, and focus groups. Representatives from the following groups were included in the scan: city and county government, educational institutions, health and human service agencies, civic groups, churches, Extension Advisory and specialized committees. Major issues confronting the county include lack of jobs that pay a living wage, low educational achievement, families in crisis, lack of transportation, environmental quality, agricultural production and marketing. A prioritization scorecard and nominal group process was utilized to determine the priority issues for Cooperative Extension programming efforts: strengthening parenting skills, developing youth life skills, and enhancement and protection of the environment.

Vance County Cooperative Extension will lead programming efforts to plan, implement, and evaluate program impacts through collaborations with Extension specialists, Advisory Leadership System, other government agencies, educational institutions, the faith-based community, private business partners, civic groups, and volunteers.

II. Objectives to Address the Cooperative Extension Long Range Plan

Producers will increase sales of food locally to more agriculturally aware consumers through market development, producer and consumer education, and new farmer and infrastructure support.
Farmers will increase their capacity to supply product for local food sales through market planning efforts, producer and consumer education, beginning farmer training programs and local market infrastructure development. The fastest growing area of consumer demand in agriculture continues to be organic. Farmers' markets continue to expand as do multiple efforts in local sustainable agriculture. Nationally, "Buy Local, Buy Fresh" movements have emerged in the face of concerns about the risks involved in long distance transportation of industrialized food production. Increasingly, public officials and business leaders see promotion of local farm products as good public policy and local economic development. Additionally, individuals will learn to supplement their current diet by growing their own fruits and vegetables as individuals or as community groups.
Individuals and groups will acquire leadership and decision making capacities needed to guide and actively participate in local and state organizations.
Leadership is important to every level of a community sharing in the creation of wealth and well-being. Youth and adult leaders must be capable of motivating groups to achieve common goals that impact North Carolina families and communities.They will need the confidence and skill to guide and support North Carolina community and state organizations. Citizens participating in the 2007 NC Tomorrow survey denoted the importance of leadership by clearly requesting leadership training (54%), social advising, community advising and technical assistance (45%)from their university system.
Youth and adults will address community issues and/or challenges through volunteerism.
Youth and adult volunteers in North Carolina contribute thousands of hours each year to strengthen communities and create strong foundations for the future. As these individuals engage in service, they are gaining new skills, generating new programs to serve their communities, building successful organizations, and fostering an ethic of service. Cooperative Extension is poised to support the development of interpersonal skills, leadership experiences, and content knowledge to ensure that citizens are prepared to engage in meaningful service throughout the lifespan. Current research suggests that youth and adult participation positively impacts civic engagement and contributes to the development of leadership capacities. With its presence in every county, Cooperative Extension is uniquely positioned to contribute to building a stronger ethic of service among youth and adults.
Futures that Work: School to Career Pathways
We are living in a new economy powered by technology, fueled by information and driven by knowledge. Extension programs provide opportunities for youth and adults to improve their level of education and increase their skills that enable them to be competitive in our global society and workforce.
Consumers and communities will enhance the value of plants, animals, and landscapes while conserving valuable natural resources and protecting the environment.
Residential, commercial and public entities will make decisions regarding plant selection, placement and management that will decrease water consumption, preserve and improve water quality, mitigate storm water contaminants, reduce erosion, energy consumption, and greenwaste, expand wildlife habitat, improve real estate value, and improve diet and nutrition of consumers. The horse and "farmer lifestyle" industry will continue to grow and have an increasing impact on North Carolina's economy, while protecting the environment. The NCDA&CS reports that 65,000 horse producers own over 225,000 horses which annually generates over $704 million of gross revenue from training, showing, boarding and breeding establishments in addition to agri-business sales of horse-related products. The total economic impact of the NC green industry is $8.6 billion, involving 151,982 employees, and 120,741 acres of production (Green Industry Council, 2006). North Carolina residential consumers spend $5.9 billion dollars per year on garden and landscape related expenses (Green Industry Council, 2006). For 2007, North Carolina's population is estimated to be 8,968,800 (LINC). The population grew by 1,323,288 (15%), between 1997 and 2007 and it is projected to grow by another 1,330,055 (13%), over the next ten years (LINC). Over 50% of the population now lives in urban areas. Despite evidence of the ecological and financial benefits, environmentally responsible landscaping strategies are not being implemented widely. Renovating a landscape to incorporate water conserving strategies may result in using 36% less water. Urban water run-off accounts for the majority of water pollution, mostly pesticides and fertilizers, that does not come from a specific industrial source. Selection of well-adapted plants, effective pest management, and appropriate care and feeding of plants will greatly reduce dependence on fertilizers and pesticides. Rain water that is not absorbed by the soil becomes erosive storm water runoff, which transports pollutants such as fertilizer, pesticides, sediment, motor oil, litter, and animal waste to local streams and rivers. Landscape designs will include rain gardens and other runoff catchment facilities (underground cisterns, etc.) that are attractive and easy to maintain in residential areas. Homeowners will learn that proper plant selection and placement can reduce winter heating bills by as much as 15% and summer cooling bills by as much as 50 percent, while reducing the need to prune over-sized plants. Wild habitat areas are rapidly being converted into housing and commercial properties, displacing native plants and animals. Choosing native or adapted plants that provide food and shelter creates a haven for butterflies, birds, lizards, and other animals. Edible landscaping can increase the amount and expand the variety of fresh fruits and vegetables consumed.
Youth and adult program participants will make healthy food choices, achieve the recommended amount of physical activity and reduce risk factors for chronic diseases.
Many North Carolinians are affected by chronic disease and conditions that compromise their quality of life and well-being. Heart disease, stroke and cancer continue to be leading causes of death in our state. In addition, obesity and obesity related chronic diseases such as diabetes continue to rise at alarming rates. Healthy eating and physical activity are critical to achieve optimal health. Many North Carolinians have diets that are too high in calories and too low in fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Portion sizes, foods eaten away-from-home and consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages continue to rise. In addition, most North Carolinians do not engage in regular physical activity. The prevalence of overweight and obesity has nearly doubled in the past 10 years. If the trend of overweight is not slowed, it will eliminate the progress we have made in reducing the burden of weigh-related chronic disease. One in every three US children born after 2000 will become diabetic unless many more people start eating less and exercising more. The cost of obesity in North Carolina in health care costs alone is over 2 billion dollars. There are many proposed reasons for the obesity epidemic, however unhealthy eating and physical inactivity are widely recognizes as primary contributors to the problem. Those who make healthy food choices and are physically active are more likely to achieve and maintain a healthy weight as well reduce chronic diseases. Ultimately, this will lead to reduction in health care costs, increased longevity, greater productivity and improved quality of life.

III. Relationship to County Government Objectives

North Carolina Cooperative Extension (NCCE), Vance County Center, partners with Vance County government to deliver research based education that enables individuals, families and organizations to maximize the use of resources that enhance quality of life for all county citizens. Vance County has identified the following issues as priority areas (not in priority order): infrastructure, education, environment, human services, economic development, government/administration, public safety, planning and development, and annual work plans. Cooperative Extension programming in focus areas such as agricultural production and marketing, farmers' markets, forest land management, 4-H youth development, youth and adult life skills, parenting education, and healthy eating and nutrition impacts the priority areas of infrastructure. education, environment, human services, economic development, and public safety.

An example of the connection between county issues and Cooperative Extension is programming focusing on agriculture and the environment; assisting local agricultural producers in production, marketing, and environmental protection. Extension staff will continue to work with county government, Farm Bureau, and other interested citizens to make a new Regional Farmers' Market a reality. 4-H/FCS efforts seek to impact educational achievement through youth life skill development and parenting education. Master Gardener volunteers will strengthen the educational experience with third grade classrooms by offering students the 4-H Soil Solutions curriculum.

Vance County Center staff will work to link Extension resources (Agriculture and Community Development, 4-H Youth Development, and Family and Consumer Sciences) across the state and nation to impact these issues and thereby enhance the quality of life for Vance County residents.

IV. Diversity Plan

NCCE, Vance County Center, utilizes traditional media (newspaper, radio, newsletters, fliers and other printed material) and electronic media (website, email, twitter, Facebook) to market Extension programs to existing and potential audiences, including African-American, Hispanic, and Asian populations as well as the visually impaired and physically challenged in our community. Local businesses are utilized to more effectively market extension programs to under-served audiences. Word-of-mouth continues to be effective in marketing educational programming. Language translation services are made available when needed. Through networking and personal marketing, efforts are made to actively recruit volunteers, and inform and invite individuals from diverse backgrounds to participate in Extension programs.

V. Primary Delivery and Evaluation Methods

Delivering timely, relevant educational programs that meet critical local needs is the cornerstone of Extension’s mission. Extension educational programs are designed to equip the citizens of Vance County with the knowledge, skills and tools to improve their economic prosperity, environmental stewardship and quality of life. An Extension program delivery system is a planned and organized mix of educational methods used to share research-based information with targeted learners.

Extension educators employ a wide variety of hands-on, experiential educational methods, such as interactive workshops and classes, demonstrations, field days and tours, that allow learners to engage in the learning process, test new knowledge and practice new skills during the educational session. This plan also includes educational methods such as seminars, client visits, fact sheets, newsletters, and home study kits that serve to support and reinforce learning as well as provide motivation for continued learning.

Armed with the most current literature on effective teaching and learning, Extension educators also skillfully select educational methods based on the learning style preferences and special needs of the targeted learners. These client-focused methods afford learners the opportunity to gain the necessary knowledge and skills to change their lives in meaningful ways.

Extension program delivery is customer driven and customer focused. As such, in addition to the County Extension Center, Extension educational programs are delivered online, in community centers, on farms, and other locations in order for our programs to be available, accessible, and utilized by the citizens of Vance County.

In Extension, success is defined as the extent to which our educational programs have made a difference in the lives of the county’s citizens. The changes we seek focus on key outcomes such as the knowledge and skills participants gain from our programs and applying knowledge and skills to enhance quality of life. Specifically, in this plan, we are using quantitative research methods such as retrospective testing, pre and posttests and/or surveys to measure change in knowledge gained, the application of that knowledge, number of new skills developed, and types of new skills developed.

Extension, as a results-oriented organization, is committed to also assessing the social, economic and/or environmental impact that our programs have on the individuals who participate, their families and communities and ultimately the county as a whole. Short and long-term impacts will be measured by quantitative means such as cost benefit analysis when appropriate data is available and by qualitative means such as testimonials from program participants, and interviews and focus groups with participants.

VI. Membership of Advisory Leadership System

Small Farms Committee
Calvin Adcock
William Owens
Curtis Paul
Susan Sears
Magnolia H. Williams
Dwight Wright
Vance County Parenting Task Force
Amy Oakes
Angelena Kearney-Dunlap
Ann Burrows
Anne Williams
Annie Perry
Antonia Predroza
Bailey Goldman
Carolyn Hayes
Cassandra Evans
Cherld Jones
Dana Greenway
Darlene Williams
Deja Fuller
Donnamarie Newkirk
Elizabeth Dale
Frank Sossamon
Geraldine Champion
Jacquetta Bullock
Jamon Glover
Jean Bell
Jeanene Clopton
Jennifer Gregory
Kanika Turrentine
Kathy Caudle
Kathy Falkner
Kim Currin
Lisa Mosley
Meredith Houchins
Millie Camacho
mishayharris
Morris White
Otha Jr & Shamieka Thornton
Sophia Jefferson
Vanessa Brooks
Vickie Jones
Wanda Hunt
Yvette Lyons
Vance County Extension and Community Advisory Committee
Lucille Alston
Marguerite Anduze
Marian Blackwell
Naomi Dixon
Ann Ellis
Rosa Evans
Geri Floyd
Evelyn Henderson
Anita Hicks
Ulice Hill
Priscilla Johnson
Annie Monroe
Fannie Russell
Doris Stainback
Velma Steed
Linda K. Terry
Verona Thorpe
Jessie Mae Williams
Lois Williams
Agatha White-Vass
Vance County 4-H Specialized Committee
Crystal Allen
William Clayton
Bill Craig
Carol Edwards
Thomas Franklin
Joel Harris
Terri Hedrick
Larry Johnson
Twanna Jones
Joselyn Kearney
Kecia Perkinson
Irvin Robinson
Kamika Turrentine
Elaine Webb
Jessica West
Vance County Advisory Leadership Council
Garry D. Daeke, Chair
Anita Hicks, Vice Chair
Bailey Goldman, Secretary
Antonia Pedroza
Ashton Murphy
Bailey Goldman
Brenda Peace-Jenkins
Byron Currin
Christeen Crudup
Eugene Matthews
Garry D. Daeke
Gordon Wilder
Lauren Edwards
Lois Williams
Marty Smith (SAC Representative)
Mary Jane Bosworth
Millie Comacho
Ruth Brummitt
Willa Clark
William Craig
Ann Burrows
Jean Bell
Paul McKenzie
Sam Fuller
Tracy Madigan
Turner Pride
Vickie Jones
Wayne Rowland
Morris White
4-H Youth Livestock Committee
Phil Walters
Joel Harris
Carol Edwards
Claudia Grissom
Master Gardener Advisory Board
Edna Gaston, Chair
Marty Finkel, Vice-Chair
Eileen Novak, Secretary
Beverly Allen
Merwin Deickmann
Deborah Price
Carl Shafer
Farmers Market Advisory Board
Deborah Price
Magnolia Williams
Sam Franklin
Kermit Thompson
Gene Matthews
Frank Hester
Lois Williams
Julia Langston
Pete Burgess
Barbara Hicks
Jackie Sergent
Gordon Wilder

VII. Staff Membership

Turner Pride
Title: County Extension Director & Extension Agent, 4-H Youth Development
Phone: (252) 438-8188
Email: turner_pride@ncsu.edu

Jean Bell
Title: Parenting Education Coordinator
Phone: (252) 438-8188
Email: jean_bell@ncsu.edu

Lisa Benavente
Title: Regional Nutrition Extension Associate - Urban Programming, EFNEP & SNAP-Ed
Phone: (919) 515-3888
Email: lisa_benavente@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provides programmatic supervision to the EFNEP program in Wake, Durham, and Orange Counties. Responsible for training new EFNEP educators and volunteer development.

Daniel Campeau
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Poultry
Phone: (919) 542-8202
Email: dan_campeau@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Work mainly with Commercial Poultry industry. I also work with small scale poultry production. Service area is now the North Central District from Guilford to Halifax with the southern edge being Chatham and Wake county respectively.

Erin Eure
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Commercial Fruits & Vegetables
Phone: (252) 357-1400
Email: erin_eure@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provides educational opportunities and technical support to commercial fruit and vegetable growers, agents, and industry in northeastern NC.

Marissa Herchler
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Animal Food Safety (FSMA Programs)
Phone: (919) 515-5396
Email: marissa_herchler@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Marissa is an Area Specialized Agent for animal food safety, with emphasis on the new Food Safety Modernization Act rules, as they apply to feed mills in North Carolina. Please contact Marissa with any FSMA related questions, or PCQI training inquiries.

Lynette Johnston
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Food Safety
Phone: (919) 515-0303
Email: lynette_johnston@ncsu.edu

Danny Lauderdale
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Nursery and Greenhouse, Eastern Region
Phone: (252) 237-0111
Email: danny_lauderdale@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provides programming to commercial ornamental nursery and greenhouse producers in eastern North Carolina.

Bill Lord
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Water Resources
Phone: (919) 496-3344
Email: william_lord@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Water quality education and technical assistance

Paul McKenzie
Title: Area Agent, Agriculture
Phone: (252) 438-8188
Email: paul_mckenzie@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provide programming in Forestry, Pesticide Education, Field Crops (Vance only), and Horticulture in Vance and Warren Counties.

Annette Roberson
Title: County Extension Administrative Assistant
Phone: (252) 438-8188
Email: aprobers@ncsu.edu

Wayne Rowland
Title: Agricultural Natural Resources Technician
Phone: (252) 438-8188
Email: wayne_rowland@ncsu.edu

Chip Simmons
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Food Safety
Phone: (919) 414-5632
Email: odsimmon@ncsu.edu

Rodney Steverson
Title: EFNEP Educator, Extension Program Assistant
Phone: (252) 438-8188
Email: rcstever@ncsu.edu

Debbie Stroud
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Consumer and Retail Food Safety
Phone: (910) 814-6033
Email: dlstroud@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Area Specialized Agents in Consumer and Retail Food Safety help to ensure that Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) Agents have access to timely, evidence-based food safety information. This is accomplished by (1) working with FCS Agents in their counties, (2) developing food safety materials and (3) planning and implementing a NC Safe Plates Food Safety Info Center.

Mitch Woodward
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Watersheds and Water Quality
Phone: (919) 250-1112
Email: mdwoodwa@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: NC Cooperative Extension's Goals include: - NC's natural resources and environmental quality will be protected, conserved and enhanced. - NC will have profitable, environmentally sustainable plant, animal and food systems. Protecting our environmental resources, particularly drinking water quality, is a top priority in NC. NC Cooperative Extension is a leader in teaching, researching, and accelerating the adoption of effective water quality protection practices.

VIII. Contact Information

Vance County Center
305 Young St
Henderson, NC 27536

Phone: (252) 438-8188
Fax: (252) 492-3830
URL: http://vance.ces.ncsu.edu