Youth in Governance

Youth leadership development is critical in building civic capacity, social capital, and long-term community sustainability in local communities. Programs that teach useful skills and build the self-confidence of young people ensure capable, effective leaders for the next generation. In addition, recent national trends including an increase in youth civic service and a new emphasis on […]

Supporting Mental Health

Wisconsin residents report an average of 3.8 poor mental health days in a month, yet many people do not have proper tools or skills to effectively reduce or manage the daily stress they experience. In 2020, the isolation of pandemic restrictions and concerns about physical health and safety increased stress and mental health concerns. In […]

Well Contamination in Southwest Wisconsin

Approximately 44% of the population in Wisconsin’s Grant, Iowa, and Lafayette counties relies on private groundwater wells. Collectively, these residents are served by over 18,000 wells. Private wells are not monitored or regulated by federal, state, or local governments; instead, homeowners are responsible for the maintenance and testing of their private well, including any treatment […]

Virtual Strength Training Leads to Improved Health

Approximately two-thirds of all Wisconsin deaths are attributed to chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, stroke, and diabetes. Regular physical activity reduces the risk of chronic illnesses and has additional benefits, including improvements in strength, muscle mass, bone density, and mental health. Across the United States, only 9% of adults are reaching the strength […]

Rivers2Lake Helps Teachers Go Virtual

Lake Superior contains 10% of Earth’s freshwater and is the cleanest of the Great Lakes. Protecting this resource is essential for Northern Wisconsin communities. To help prepare the next generation of Great Lakes stewards, the Rivers2Lake education program at Extension’s Lake Superior National Estuarine Research Reserve uses the Lake Superior watershed and the St. Louis […]

Environmental Science Storytelling

Empowering youth to be environmental change-agents and advocates in Wisconsin communities requires development of critical thinking skills, data literacy, and science communication abilities. In addition, providing inquiry-based research experiences to underrepresented youth in STEM helps them to succeed in competitive modern labor markets and is a step toward closing representation gaps in professional fields. In […]

Nonprofits Addressing Complex Community Issues

Nonprofits play an important role in addressing complex community issues ranging from homelessness and social justice, to water quality and mental health. Local governments rely on nonprofits to deliver programs and services to residents at low cost. Nonprofits also contribute to the economy, employing 11.9% of Wisconsin’s workforce with an annual average wage of $50,243 […]

Sustainability & Profitability of Beef Production

Facility management plays a key role in the profitability of beef enterprises. Damaged buildings lead to animals facing adverse winter and summer conditions, slowing down their rate of growth and ultimately leading to higher producer costs due to increased inputs such as feed. The cost of repairing or replacing damaged buildings can be high, and […]

Increasing Literacy in Justice-Involved Families

Parental incarceration is an adverse childhood experience that affects many Wisconsin households, with more than 100,500 individuals under correctional supervision and people of color being disproportionately affected. About 88,000 children in Wisconsin have or have had a parent in jail or prison during their childhood. This is harmful to children’s development and can create near-term […]

Supporting Adults Who Experience Isolation

Social isolation and loneliness are critical concerns for both physical and mental health. The experience of isolation and loneliness results in a cascade of stress hormones and inflammation in the body and has been associated with increased risk of depression, anxiety, suicide, physical conditions such as heart disease, and even increased risk of premature mortality. […]

Building Capacity to Govern

There are 1,923 Wisconsin local governments, and close to 10,000 elected governing body members in Wisconsin. To govern effectively, Wisconsin’s local government elected officials and staff need to understand their roles and responsibilities to help their community thrive. Extension’s Local Government Education Program provides educational programs to train, inform, and challenge Wisconsin’s local government elected […]

Supporting Safe & Sustainable Gardening

Vegetable gardening is important to many Wisconsin households with more than 440,000 households (19%) purchasing vegetable plants over a one-year period and 320,000 households (14%) purchasing vegetable seeds over a one-year period. Approximately 1.5 million adults in Wisconsin (32%) have a garden of some kind. Due to the pandemic, stay-at-home orders and fear over disease […]

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