Farmers Union Campers learn financial literacy, cooperation

Participants also take part in Safety Camp

Participants at this year’s Sanborn County Farmers Union Camp also got to take part in a Farm Safety Camp. Youth rotated to several different stations that included: PTO Safety, Electrical Safety, Grain Flow Safety, Livestock Handling, ATV Safety, Mass vs. Force and a Wheel of Misfortune. Local older FFA/4-H members guided youth through the stations and directed safety discussions. Guest speakers included Ken Schlimgen Central Electric and Woonsocket firemen.

Forestburg — Many Americans have too much debt, aren’t saving enough money every month and need to work on their financial literacy. That education should start early, and Sanborn County Farmers Union’s annual day camp taught young people about the importance of taking care of their money and about the impact cooperative businesses have had on our state’s economy.
A total of 38 young people attended this year’s camp themed, “Farmers Union is our name, Cooperation is our game.” The kids participated in activities and games that taught them about cooperative business, rural communities, and agriculture in a fun and safe setting. They participated in hands-on team building activities, played a cooperative human board game to test their knowledge of finances.
“We hope the children who learn about saving money and cooperating with each other at an early age will be more successful adults,” said Sanborn County Education Director Pat Larson. “Our youth need to learn about what cooperation in their own personal lives can do, along with the importance of cooperative business and being a good steward of the money they earn.”
Along with activities, games and singing, each child also decorated their own wooden bank as a craft to promote saving money. Each child also received a free T-shirt.

Ken Schlimgen from Central Electric Cooperative talks to the youth about electricity.

In addition to the Farmers Union activities Sanborn County 4-H and Sanborn County FFA also partnered for the day so that campers could participate in hands on activities for “Save Our Farm Youth” safety demonstrations.  Campers learned all the ways to be safe on the farm, with farm animals, grain, PTO and electricity. The CHS Foundation  sponsored of the day’s activities.
Participants at this year’s Sanborn County Farmers Union camp were: Jaycee Baruth of Alpena; Sawyer and Aubrey Senska of Forestburg; Wesley and Carter Linke of Wessington Springs; Bryce and Brady Larson, Michael Hoffman, Keaton and Kenlie Fridley and Chloe Degen of Letcher; Noah, Kara and Aiden Wormstadt, Katie Schmit, Samantha and Casady Dean of Artesian; Trista and Kaylee White, Josie Weber, Brooklyn Swenson, Nick Snedeker, Morgan and Collin Schmiedt, Clay and Kade Olinger, Brody Miller, Megan Linke, Zach, Nick and Ben Kleinsasser, Camden and Mariah Jost, Michaela Hensler, Corey Fink, Natalie Evans, Lily Dise and Xavier Baysinger all of Woonsocket.
Helping at this year’s Sanborn County Farmers Union Camp were Sanborn Education Director Pat Larson, 4-H Extension Officer Audra Scheel, Sherryl Rankin, Shane Gross, Lisa Snekeder and Allegra Fink, Hannah Spelbring, Rex Schlicht, Lacey Christensen, Devon Weber, Jonathan and Nathan Linke, Haley Degen, Jessica Schmidt, Ty Ziebart, Colton Hotchkiss, Aaron Linke, Corrie Snedeker and Kasey Voorhees.

Ken Schlimgen from Central Electric helps Michael Hoffman try on electrical safety equipment.

For more information on South Dakota Farmers Union and how you and your children can get involved in the organization’s youth activities, visit the education page at or call Bonnie Geyer, State Education Director at 605-352-6761 ext. 125.

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