Oh, Deer: How to Keep Your Yard from Becoming a Buffet

The Ohio Department of Natural Resource Division of Wildlife is accustomed to fielding complaints about nuisance deer, especially in urban areas. With the coronavirus pandemic keeping folks at home, more people are planting gardens for the first time. Someone new to the game might not know how to handle a hungry four-legged visitor, said Geoff Westerfield, a wildlife biologist with ODNR.  Stark County’s deer population tends to be stable in rural areas, such as Minerva, and growing in more urban areas. In rural areas, ODNR can adjust hunting regulations to help keep populations in check. In cities, that’s not typically an option, and without control, populations will grow, he said. Follow this link to learn more.

Sourced from: Canton Repository

Stark County 4-H STEM Engages 650 Youth

In Stark County, 4-H STEM activities were the focus in school, out of school, at a housing community, and with other youth-serving organizations. David Crawford, 4-H Educator, reports more than 650 youth participated in STEM programs (during the 2019 calendar year) that included Chick Quest, 10-minute science activities, and Rockets Away. In addition to increasing their subject-area knowledge, students developed an understanding of a wide variety of STEM careers. Both adult and teen volunteers were trained to facilitate activities. Eleven teens learned how to teach the Chick Quest curriculum at the Indian River Juvenile Correctional Facility. The training led Indian River administrators to request more 4-H involvement at the facility with additional STEM activities, 4-H Pet Pals visits, and career education. Follow this link to learn more.

Sourced from: Ohio 4-H Youth Development 

Immigrants and Refugees-A Gain for Ohio

The United States has long welcomed people from distant shores. Ohio currently welcomes thousands of immigrants and refugees each year.  According to the Office of the United Nations High Commission on Refugees, a refugee is someone who “owing to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, is outside the country of his nationality, and is unable to, or owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail himself of the protection of that country.” In Ohio, most refugees have been resettled in Franklin, Cuyahoga, Montgomery, and Summit Counties. Resettlement agencies, religious organizations, and community groups are critical to helping persons adjust to their new communities by assisting with the most immediate needs of finding homes, developing English language skills, and medical care. These same organizations also assist with long term challenges such as job training. Immigrants are defined as “those who have entered the United States as a lawful permanent resident.”

In a recent report by the Chicago Council on Global Affairs entitled “Growing the Heartland: How Immigrants Offset Population Decline and an Aging Workforce in Midwest Metropolitan Cities” stated that while much of the Midwest suffered net population loss between 2000-2009, the Akron, OH metropolitan area (Summit and Stark County) gained over 9,000 new residents and 54% of this was due to immigrants and refugees settling in the area. People from this population are starting businesses, buying homes, and increase the local economy.

In some counties, such as Cuyahoga and Montgomery, Ohio State University Extension has worked with organizations that help refugees and immigrants develop job skills via agri-businesses, such as farms and compost facilities.

Immigrants and refugees are changing the landscape of our Ohio cities, can help reverse population loss, and are becoming vibrant members of our communities. How can we best embrace and support our newest neighbors?

For more information:



Reviewed by:

David Crawford, Educator III

Stark County Extension Director & 4-H Youth Development