Canter’s Cave 4-H Camp Receives $25,000 Farm Credit Gift

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Southern Ohio’s Canter’s Cave 4-H Camp is the latest of the state’s network of 4-H camps to receive a major gift from Farm Credit Mid-America.

Southern Ohio’s Canter’s Cave 4-H Camp is the latest of the state’s network of 4-H camps to receive a major gift from Farm Credit Mid-America. The $25,000 corporate donation received its initial impetus from a Farm Credit employee who experienced some of the camp’s needs firsthand.

Heather Simpkins, a 4-H alum and a loan officer with Farm Credit’s Washington Court House office, is a 4-H leader for her children’s Cloverbud (kindergarten to second grade level) Club. While helping to lead a work day at the camp, Simpkins recognized both a problem and an opportunity.

“We went expecting to paint two cabins,” she said. “But there was so much work to be done, we couldn’t even get one finished. It quickly became obvious to me that the camp would be a good candidate for Farm Credit’s stewardship program.”

Simpkins worked with camp officials to complete the application and submitted it for consideration. The request was approved and the award was presented at the camp on June 22. As soon as the summer camping season is completed, work will begin on replacing roofs, fixing doors and other refurbishing of five cabins on the “Boys Hill,” which will be re-named “Farm Credit Hill.” 4-H youth and volunteers will provide a significant portion of the labor for the renovation.

The camp, which is located in northeastern Jackson County on 350 beautifully wooded acres, annually serves more than 2,000 4-H members from a nine-county area. In addition, the facility also hosts a number of specialized camps for a diverse clientele, including the state’s 4-H Special Needs Camp for youth with disabilities and their caregivers. Canter’s Cave is also the home of the Ohio 4-H Shooting Sports Program.

This year the camp will serve as a Camp Corral site for sons and daughters of military parents who have been disabled or wounded while in the service. And it will host another camp for youth of parents serving in the armed forces.

Farm Credit staff delivered a $20,000 check and a "Farm Credit Hill" plaque to the staff at Canters Cave 4-H Camp.

Connie Goble, who is an extension educator from Pike County and a very active member of the camp’s board, said the camp has a passion for trying to provide opportunities for all youth, and didn’t hesitate to offer her belief that Canter’s Cave is “the best 4-H camp in the state.” She said that Farm Credit’s gift would be invaluable.

“Farm Credit’s assistance will be monumental to this project,” said Goble. “We do our best to be self-sufficient, but grants like this help us get a lot of things fixed that we couldn’t do otherwise.”
Farm Credit’s Simpkins said she was glad for the opportunity to be a link in helping with the restoration project.

“When we submitted the application, I didn’t know what was going to happen and it’s just so exciting to see things fall into place,” she said. “Projects like this afford us the opportunity to give back to the communities we serve, for both our members and non-members. I’m a firm believer in 4-H, and like many Farm Credit employees, it’s an important part of my background.”

About Farm Credit Services of Mid-America, ACA

Farm Credit Services of Mid-America, ACA is an $18.3 billion financial services cooperative serving more than 95,000 farmers, agribusinesses and rural residents in Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky and Tennessee. The association provides loans for all farm and rural living purposes including real estate, operating equipment and housing and related services such as crop insurance, and vehicle, equipment and building leases. For more information about Farm Credit, call 1-800-444-FARM or visit them on the web at http://www.e-farmcredit.com.

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Randy Barbee

Christal Glover
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