In the words spoken from the hit movie Forest Gump, “Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re going to get,” middle school students from both Logan County and the Russellville School Systems found them to be true this week as they maneuvered through the annual Reality Store held at the Logan County Extension Cooperative Service.
The Reality Store is a Life-Skills 4-H Program which is held in cooperation with the Logan County Extension Cooperative Service, the Russellville and Logan County School Systems, and the Family Resource Youth Services. This yearly event is held to simulate the impact of real world choices and helps students see they need to start looking to their future now.
Upon arrival this past week, students from Adairville, Auburn, Chandlers, Olmstead, Lewisburg, and Russellville were assigned a random career and salary, spouse, number of children, and then expected to budget for various real life expenses. Moving from station to station, students considered the cost of insurance, housing, grocery bills, car payments, and other household requirements and made choices based on the available funds of their family budget.
“This is a very important program,” said 4-H Agent Carrie Derossett. “It really helps the students realize the importance of budgeting, education and making the right decisions in life.”
The Reality Store is an eye opener for students. It not only gives them a sneak peek into adulthood, but helps them realize what they do and don’t want out of their life.
One of the main comments heard the most from students after going through the Reality Store is they cannot believe this is what their parents go through on a daily basis.
The Reality Store has been held for over 26 years. It was first put on by the University of Kentucky. The event sees between 700-800 students. The event could not be done without all the volunteer help. From retired teachers, parents, industry leaders, financial institutions to local businesses, all help to show the kids that life is all about choices, some they need to make now.
To contact Chris Cooper, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 270-726-8394.