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“Ordinary Women, Extraordinary Service” is a new book published by the N.C. Cooperative Extension Service and the N.C. State Family and Consumer Sciences Foundation.
This 340-page book reports, records and remembers the 100-year history of Family and Consumer Sciences in North Carolina. It contains many photos and tells the story of how ordinary women helped move their communities forward and continue to serve in each county.
It also describes the many ways the educational and service programs of Family and Consumer Science professionals and the home demonstration clubs have changed over the years.
What is Family and Consumer Sciences?
This part of the Cooperative Extension Service in North Carolina began with home demonstration canning clubs in 1911.
These clubs later became known as Extension homemaker clubs and are now called the N.C. Extension and Community Association. They meet under the leadership of Cooperative Extension service agents.
What was previously called home demonstration or home economics is now known as Family and Consumer Sciences. Today, Family and Consumer Science professionals serve citizens in all of the state’s 100 counties and the eastern band of the Cherokee Nation through the Cooperative Extension Service.
A recent celebration in Raleigh honored the women who have been involved with this program for the past century. These include volunteer members and leaders, as well as Extension agents that have served communities.
Brunswick County has its own page in “Ordinary Women, Extraordinary Service,” recognizing successful Family and Consumer Science programs in this county. Some programs from the past include: Money Trackers, cooking with herbs and spices for a healthy low-fat and low-sodium diet and home ownership preparation.
The Extension and Community Association served the Brunswick County community until December 2009. The book includes photos of former Brunswick County Extension and Community Association members when they donated stuffed bears and quilts for traumatized children to local law enforcement. There is also a photo of ECA club members collecting and refurbishing gently used dolls that were donated to needy children at Christmas.
Extension and Community Association members in Brunswick County are also shown collecting donated food to the local family assistance organizations.
Funds for this centennial book were made locally by Brunswick County Farm Bureau; Milton Coleman, former county extension director; Susan Morgan, former county FCS agent; and from the local Extension and Community Association, in honor of Morgan.
A copy of this book is available at the Hickmans Crossroads Library, 1040 Calabash Road in Calabash. Speaking at this presentation were Susan Morgan and Mary Russ, both former Extension FCS agents in Brunswick County, and Sarah Barnwell, current FCS agent with the N.C. Cooperative Extension in Brunswick County.
To get a copy of your own book, contact the Brunswick County Extension Center at 253-2610.