Hicks Receives State Honors
Johanna Hicks, Hopkins County Family & Community Health Extension Agent, recently returned from the 2022 Texas Extension Association of Family & Consumer Sciences state conference with awards in hand. The Healthy Texas Award was presented at the TEAFCS Awards ceremony in Decatur, TX, with Extension professionals from across the state in attendance. Her leadership with the Community Health/Wellness Alliance to conduct sessions at summer student day camps led to impressive results. It all started when the usual “Kids’ Camp: Fun, Food, Fitness” was cancelled due to the COVID pandemic. However, the Sulphur Springs ISD developed a summer day camp in 2020 for students which has taken place each summer since then. Additional opportunities for Hicks and her collaborators surfaced as Cumby ISD added a camp program to its summer schedule in 2022. Hicks and her team jumped in to assist in leading sessions.
Providing education on nutrition, physical activity, hydration, water safety, sun safety, stranger danger, and bullying, Hicks and representatives from the Texas Department of State Health Services, United Healthcare, and Master Wellness Volunteers made a real impact in the lives of those students. Hicks provided incentive items to reinforce topics being taught, including MyPlate flying discs, sports bottles, MyPlate books, toss up balls, and more. Seven issues of “Color Me Healthy” newsletter including recipes, tips for healthy eating, suggestions for incorporating physical activity into daily life, and more were distributed to parents. Hands-on cooking sessions in 2021 and 2022 included the importance of increasing fruit and vegetable consumption. They also learned about reading a recipe, using the correct measuring utensils, hand hygiene, oven safety, and food safety.
Results were impressive. 100% of participants indicated that they plan to drink more water and fewer sweetened beverages. 100% also indicated that they plan to eat breakfast every morning, while 88% indicated that they plan to eat more fruits and vegetables.
Hopkins County Commissioners’ Court Honored
The Hopkins County Commissioners’ Court received recognition at the 2022 Texas Extension Association of Family & Consumer Sciences state conference. Johanna Hicks, Hopkins County Family & Community Health Extension Agent, nominated the court due to their support and participation in events of the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service. The court, consisting of Judge Robert Newsom, Mickey Barker, Greg Anglin, Wade Bartley, and Joe Price, view Extension as a viable asset to the community and serve on Extension committees and task forces. They attend Extension Leadership planning meetings, annual Extension Banquet, and 4-H Achievement Banquet as their schedules allow. Judge Newsom also assists in recognizing National 4-H Week by reading a proclamation and giving encouraging words to our county’s youth.
Judge Newsom was instrumental in encouraging county employees to take part in Walk Across Texas, an 8-week walking program to promote daily physical activity, which took place Fall, 2021. Three county official teams took part in the event in addition to three other local teams. Total miles logged were 7,883.44. In the words of Johanna Hicks, “The Hopkins County Commissioners’ Court is a shining example of support, encouragement, and involvement in the work of Texas A&M AgriLife Extension. From Extension building improvements to involvement in Walk Across Texas, each commissioner has buoyed the life of work of Extension in Hopkins County.”
Contributed by Johanna Hicks, B.S., M.Ed. Photos by Callie Cline.