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CONSUMERS ENERGY FOUNDATION FUNDS
KETTUNEN CENTER WATERFRONT STEWARDSHIP AND RECREATION PROJECT

     The Consumers Energy Foundation has funded a $50,000 grant to support the Michigan 4-H Foundation’s Kettunen Center waterfront stewardship and recreation project.
     Kettunen Center is Michigan’s 4-H training center and full-service conference center owned and operated by the Michigan 4-H Foundation. Kettunen Center is located on the shores of Center Lake in Tustin, Mich.  
    Groups often use the waterfront area during their stay at the center for swimming, kayaking, canoeing, fishing and other recreation. The area currently includes a seated fire pit, outdoor grilling facilities and watercraft storage.
     The grant will improve the Kettunen Center waterfront to enhance these outdoor recreation opportunities. These improvements will be made with acute attention paid to maintaining the lake’s eco-systems, building natural protections for the waterfront and encouraging environmentally safe and habitat friendly usage.
    “Our promise is to care for the communities we serve, and that includes protecting and promoting Michigan’s natural resources,” said David Mengebier, president of the Consumers Energy Foundation. “We are pleased we can promote outdoor recreational opportunities with 4-H and Kettunen Center, continuing our collaboration that began decades ago.”
     Consumers Energy was a founding partner of the Michigan 4-H Foundation and helped plan and build Kettunen Center in the 1960s. In addition, Consumers Energy’s investments have supported Kettunen Center’s geothermal heating and cooling system for long-term energy efficiency, a guest suite in the Red Oak wing, 4-H volunteer training at Kettunen Center and general 4-H programs.
     “We are truly excited about the opportunities Consumers Energy is making possible!” said Chris Gentry, Kettunen Center director. “Consumers Energy’s support of Kettunen Center’s waterfront renovation will greatly enhance educational, recreational, and fellowship opportunity for many thousands of visitors and guests at the center throughout the spring, summer and fall seasons.”
     The Kettunen Center waterfront stewardship and recreation upgrades include expanding the sanded beach and designated swimming areas, adding a needed docking area, and adding additional recreational features such as horse shoe pits and a four-square area. Also included in the project is the improvement of the outdoor eating and food preparation spaces, purchasing of new kayaks and canoes, expanding the boat storage house, and re-designing and upgrading the fire pit area to better meet guests’ comfort and encourage usage across seasons. These improvements are scheduled for completion in the summer of 2014.
     The Michigan 4-H Foundation is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization which supports Michigan 4-H Youth Development. For more information about the Michigan 4-H Foundation, visit http://www.mi4hfdtn.org. For more information about Kettunen Center, visit www.kettunencenter.org.
Michigan 4-H Youth Development is the youth-serving program of Michigan State University Extension. More than 176,000 youth are involved in 4-H with the support of 20,000 adult volunteers. For more information about Michigan 4-H, visit www.4h.msue.msu.edu.

 

GREENSTONE FARM CREDIT SERVICES GRANTS $50,000 TO MICHIGAN 4-H
     GreenStone Farm Credit Services has approved a $50,000 grant to the Michigan 4-H Foundation to support 4-H volunteer recognition and training over the next five years.
GreenStone Farm Credit Services has annually co-sponsored the 4-H Award of the Clover since 1988 providing 4-H pins and certificates for tenured 4-H volunteer recognition.
In addition, this grant will provide support for two 4-H volunteer trainings – the Michigan 4-H Veterinary Science Adult and Teen Volunteer Leader Workshop and the 4 H Beef, Sheep and Swine Volunteer Leader Workshop – both held in February each year.
     “We are so very pleased to welcome this increased partnership with GreenStone Farm Credit Services that serves to advance 4-H volunteer development programs which in turn increases the impact 4-H can have on Michigan’s young people,” said Cheryl Howell, Michigan 4-H Foundation executive director.
     Each year, a number of 4-H volunteer training workshops are offered statewide, most of them at Kettunen Center, Michigan’s 4-H training center and full-service conference center owned and operated by the Michigan 4-H Foundation. Donors, like GreenStone Farm Credit Services, make it possible to offer 4-H workshops to participants at nearly half of the cost.
At the 4-H Veterinary Science Workshop, the teen and adult participants explore animal systems and learn about animal health for a broad array of animal species. They are able to learn from others, share information and experiences, ask questions and quiz veterinarians about career opportunities.
     The Beef, Sheep and Swine Workshop topics include animal health, management, care and nutrition. The workshop also offers ways to enhance communication and teaching skills, and learn about the many opportunities available for those interested in the beef, sheep and swine industries.
     “These 4-H workshops provide an educational opportunity for both youth and adults to learn about livestock and veterinary science. The hands-on sessions are taught on a variety of topics to meet the needs of the attendees while allowing for application of science and life skills. Without generous supporters, like GreenStone Farm Credit Services, these opportunities would not be as widely available to youth and adults across Michigan,” said Julie Thelen, MSU Extension Educator in 4-H Livestock and Veterinary Science.
     The Michigan 4-H Foundation is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization which supports Michigan 4-H Youth Development. For more information about the Michigan 4-H Foundation, visit http://www.mi4hfdtn.org. For more information about Kettunen Center, visit www.kettunencenter.org.
Michigan 4-H Youth Development is the youth-serving program of Michigan State University Extension. More than 176,000 youth are involved in 4-H with the support of 20,000 adult volunteers. For more information about Michigan 4-H, visit www.4h.msue.msu.edu.