Meridian, Miss. Meridian was one of several stops made Wednesday by members of 4-H clubs in Mississippi.
This stop was an opportunity to teach the kids about business cooperatives. EMEPA was an example of what the MSU Extension Service wants to teach young people involved in 4-H.
Time Martin of EMEPA says, "We are one of many who help to teach the kids about cooperative business models and EMEPA is a cooperative. We are member-owned, member-managed through a board of directors with emphasis on keeping costs low for our members. And that is just a great business model that the MSU staff is trying to teach these kids."
What 4-H hopes to accomplish is to give great opportunities to bright minds and talented kids who might not get opportunities to shine.
Victoria Manning, vice-president of the southeast district, says, "4-H is out there for those who don't really have anything. But there is also so much you can do from robotics, to livestock, to modeling, you name it and there is a group out there. It just gives great opportunity for people that didn't have opportunity."
There were many young people here for different reasons, but each had the same simple goal, to better themselves.
Erica Nelson, who’s on the tour for the first time, said "I decided to come because this is my first year, and I really need to get out of my shell and stop being nervous. I felt like this opportunity would have made me a strong person and be able to talk in front of people."
After touring EMEPA, the 4-H members went to a farmer’s supply store, grain terminal and a cotton gin before visiting the state capitol to learn about government.