AgriLife’s Hicks receives state honors for educational programming

Hicks receives state honors

Johanna Hicks, Hopkins County Family and Community Health Extension Agent, recently returned from the 2022 Texas Extension Association Family and Consumer Sciences statewide conference with awards in hand. The Healthy Texas Award was presented at the TEAFCS Awards ceremony in Decatur, TX, with Extension professionals from around the state in attendance. Her leadership with the Community Health / Wellness Alliance to hold sessions at summer camps for students led to impressive results. It all started when the usual “Kids’ Camp: Fun, Food, Fitness” was canceled due to the COVID pandemic. However, Sulfur Springs ISD did develop a summer day camp in 2020 for students that has taken place every summer since. Additional opportunities for Hicks and her staff arose when Cumby ISD added a camp program to its summer schedule in 2022. Hicks and her team stepped in to help with the main sessions.

Providing education on nutrition, physical activity, hydration, water safety, sun safety, stranger danger and bullying, Hicks and representatives from the Texas Department of State Health Services, United Healthcare and Master Wellness Volunteers made an impact real in the lives of those people. students. Hicks provided incentive items to reinforce the topics being taught, including MyPlate Frisbees, Sports Bottles, MyPlate Books, Throwing Balls and more. Seven editions of the “Color Me Healthy” newsletter were distributed to parents, including recipes, healthy eating tips, suggestions for incorporating physical activity into daily life and more. The practical cooking sessions in 2021 and 2022 included the importance of increasing the consumption of fruits and vegetables. They also learned how to read a recipe, use the correct measuring utensils, hand hygiene, oven safety, and food safety.

The results were impressive. 100% of the participants indicated that they plan to drink more water and less sugary drinks. 100% also indicated that they plan to eat breakfast every morning, while 88% indicated that they plan to eat more fruits and vegetables.

Hopkins County Commissioners Court Honored

Hopkins County Commissioners Court received recognition at the 2022 Texas Extension Association Family and Consumer Sciences statewide conference. Johanna Hicks, Hopkins County Family and Community Health Extension Agent, nominated the court due to his support and participation in Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service events. The court, made up of Justice Robert Newsom, Mickey Barker, Greg Anglin, Wade Bartley, and Joe Price, views Extension as a viable asset to the community and serves on Extension committees and task forces. They attend Extension Leadership planning meetings, the annual Extension Banquet, and the 4-H Achievement Banquet as their schedules allow. Judge Newsom also helps recognize National 4-H Week by reading a proclamation and giving words of encouragement to the youth of our county.

Judge Newsom was instrumental in encouraging county employees to participate in Walk Across Texas, an 8-week walking program to promote daily physical activity, held in the fall of 2021. Three official county teams participated at the event, in addition to three other venues. teams The total number of miles recorded was 7,883.44. In the words of Johanna Hicks, “The Hopkins County Commissioners Court is a shining example of support, encouragement and involvement in the work of Texas A&M AgriLife Extension. From Extension building improvements to involvement with Walk Across Texas, each commissioner has boosted Extension’s working life in Hopkins County.”

Contributed by Johanna Hicks, BS, M.Ed. photos by Callie Cline.

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