The logo, the font, the overall style of a brand, improves recognition and builds trust with clients. Branding for 4-H is no exception. The 4-H emblem is one of the most recognized logos in the world. Knowing the strength of our brand, it is critical that we as professionals, take appropriate measures to protect that brand.
The Emblem: Only produced in green (preferred), black, gold, or white, stem always pointing to the right, and never with anything obstructing the view of the entire emblem. When using the emblem in print or online materials it should always retain its size ratio. Read more at: 4-H Name and Emblem: https://nifa.usda.gov/sites/default/files/resource/4-H%20Name%20and%20Emblem%20User%20Guide%202014.pdf
The Name: USE THE HYPHEN!!!! (Phew, I got that out of my system). The only appropriate way to write 4-H is… “4-H.” “4H” or “Four-H” are incorrect.
The Pledge: What if we added additional motions to the Pledge of Allegiance, beyond just placing our hand over our heart? Perhaps we held up one finger for “one nation” or waved our hands for the word “flag.” Wouldn’t happen would it? However, I’ve often seen extra movements added to the 4-H Pledge. I hate to be the pledge police (I REALLY DO!) but that’s incorrect. The correct pledge motions:
…and that’s it. Please note- only one hand salutes when pledging your head, and we don’t use any gestures when saying “For my club, my community, my country, and my world.”
4-H Slogan: “Learn by Doing” (Experiential Education anyone?)
4-H Motto: “To Make the Best Better”
I believe in 4-H for the opportunity it will give me to become a useful citizen.
I believe in the training of my HEAD for the power it will give me to think, plan, and reason.
I believe in the training of my HEART for the nobleness it will give me to be kind, sympathetic, and true.
I believe in the training of my HANDS for the ability they will give me to be helpful, skillful, and useful.
I believe in the training of my HEALTH for the strength it will give to enjoy life, resist disease, and work efficiently.
I believe in my country, my state, and my community, and in my responsibility for their development.
In all these things I believe, and I am willing, to dedicate my efforts to their fulfillment.
Belonging, as we know, is the most important of the 4-H Essential Elements. Ensuring that your 4-H program employs the appropriate branding gives your local 4-H members a sense of unity with Florida 4-H and 4-H nationally, and contributes to young people feeling as though they are connected to something (and BELONG to something) bigger than themselves.
Now get out there…and protect the brand!