Giving Back to the Community

When businesses and organizations refuse to clean up their pollution, River Watch is forced to pursue litigation. Monies from River Watch settlements go back to the community for restoration, education, outreach and studies.

The following groups and their projects have received River Watch grants between $5,000- $70,000 dollars. Thank you to the City of Santa Rosa and the Russian River Watershed Protection Committee (Brenda Adelman) for joining River Watch in the distribution of $120,000 for the Environmental Grant 2002. The year that each group received funding is in brackets. Learn more about the group and the status on their projects below:

photo: Storm Water Project Report 2005· Atascadero Creek and Green Valley Creek Watershed Council (2002):
Project: Through a series of classroom activities, outdoor work, and walking field trips into Graton, students at Oak Grove School will discover how storm water runoff fits into the water cycle and how potential hazards to the coho and steelhead bearing Atascadero Creek can be mitigated through site improvements at the school as well as outreach to the Graton Community Clean Water Institute.

· David Berman & Susan McGovern (2002):
Laguna de Santa Rosa Watershed Map Project: The 16" x 20" map (including downstream watersheds along the Russian River) with water quality information on the back will be distributed to all public school classrooms in the Laguna watershed area. About 600 copies will be printed.

· Blucher Creek Watershed Council (2002):
Erosion and Sedimentation Study to be carried out by the environmental consulting firm, Purnuske Chatam, Inc. specialists in habitat restoration. The study would include identifying significant sources of erosion in Blucher Creek watershed, classifying erosion sites by restoration potential, developing costs analyses, and educate local property owners about soil conservation and sedimentation reduction practices.

· Blucher Creek Watershed Council (2002):
Outreach and Education Program would include distribution of 4 newsletters hat would educate local residents and property owners about watershed management practices and other useful information, four workshops covering such things as educating about the watershed concept, creek stewardship, etc. liaison with other watershed groups, and provide website and community feedback.

· Community Clean Water Institute (2001- 2005):
Community Clean Water Institute (CCWI) protects water resources and public health, identifies pollution sources through research, education and water quality testing, and prevents water pollution throughout Northern California. CCWI collects and analyzes existing water and air test data, engages in education and community outreach activities, and shares information with government regulatory agencies and the public.

· Land Partners Through Stewardship (Land Paths) (2002):
Riparian restoration project at Morrison Brothers Dairy near Stony Point Road. This project will restore about 500' of riparian along the Laguna de Santa Rosa, control non-native species and replant approximately 5acres of wetland habitat area. It is jointly funded by the National Fish and Wildlife Service. Besides restoration, this project intends to serve as a model for cooperation between agricultural and environment interests. The site will be maintained by student volunteers.

· Land Partners Through Stewardship (Land Paths) (2002):
Working in conjunction with 5 or more other groups and agencies would develop text, design and location for proposed interpretative panels to be located along a popular section of Santa Rosa Creek (in downtown Santa Rosa.) The panels would educate the public about the watershed, fish migration along the Creek, history of the Creek including Native American lore, and native wildlife and plants.

· Noyo Watershed Alliance

·Sotoyome Resource Conservation District (2002):
Proposed outreach, education and distribution of the The House and Garden Audit: Protecting Your Family's Health and Improving the Environment (publication developed under a grant from Regional and State Water Quality Boards). This project will provide funding for printing (300 copies), distribution and implementation of the Audit through a series of 10 workshops and presentations. The Audit instructs individual urban and rural residential homeowners in evaluating their property management, gardening practices, water conservation, how to reduce runoff of contaminants, sediment and pesticides, etc.

photo: Storm Water Project Report 2005· Stewards of Slavianka (Stewards of the Coast and Redwoods) (2002):
The Willow Creek Watershed Education Program is a state park “Volunteer in Parks” program that is designed to education students in middle and high school about watershed values and what is being done to restore Willow Creek as a viable salmonid habitat. Students learn about erosion, sedimentation, and how macro-invertebrates are indicators of stream health. The funding received from the City of Santa Rosa provided recruitment and training for docents, volunteer and teacher’s manuals, as well as resource materials for students and teachers.

photo: Storm Water Project Report 2005photo: Storm Water Project Report 2005

Above photos courtesy of Michele Luna, Stewards of the Coast and Redwoods

· Town Hall Coalition (2000):
The Town Hall Coalition is a grassroots social movement of citizens from all walks of life who have come together to protect public health and safety and the environment. Your support of the Town Hall Coalition enables us to identify key issues, network with grassroots citizens' groups and organize teach-ins and public forums. We also produce and distribute position papers for use by friends and neighbors to inform them of their rights regarding water, soil erosion, pesticide drift, habitat degradation, grading, forest conversions to vineyards, industrial vineyard and wine factory development, logging and more.

·West County Watershed Network (2002):
West County Watershed Network is an alliance of watershed groups in western Sonoma County and consists of Atascadero Green Valley Watershed Council, Blucher Creek Watershed Council, Dutch Bill Creek Watershed Group, Laguna de Santa Rosa Watershed Council, Salmon Creek Watershed Council, Estero Americano and Ebabias Creek Watershed Group, and the Stewards of Slavianka. The network will sponsor the West County Watershed Day (May 18th,2003 at Salmon Creek Middle School on Bohemian Highway) with the goal of increasing awareness of watersheds natural resources and initiate outreach to encourage all residents to participate in future watershed events and management planning.