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Lend a Hand!
Organizations throughout Oregon are bringing people together to protect and restore vibrant human and wildlife communities. Local watershed councils, soil and water conservation districts, and nonprofit groups all need volunteers to roll up their sleeves and help make a difference on the ground. Here are just a few of the many organizations and opportunities available to Oregonians who want to lend a hand.
Get involved with your local watershed council.
Watershed councils are groups of people who come together to achieve a common vision for sustaining the ecological and economic health and livability of their watershed. Oregon has more than 90 voluntary, locally-driven councils; there is certain to be one near you. Watershed councils identify priorities for action and engage landowners as participants in projects to protect and restore wildlife habitat and water quality. They undertake education projects to reach out to other community members about watershed issues. They provide coordinated, broad-based input to local, state and federal decision makers about natural resource decisions that affect their watershed. The Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board is the state agency that provides assistance to Oregon's watershed councils; visit their website to find a watershed council near you and for additional information.
Participate in your local soil and water conservation district.
Conservation Districts are units of state or tribal government that identify natural resource problems within their boundaries and offer assistance in resolving them. Guiding this assistance are boards of local leaders who know the people in their communities and who are familiar with conservation needs in the district. Visit the website of the Oregon Association of Conservation Districts for a list of the 45 Conservation Districts in Oregon. The Oregon Department of Agriculture, the state agency with administrative oversight responsibilities for soil and water conservation districts in Oregon, maintains additional information about the districts.
Volunteer with SOLV.
SOLV is a statewide organization dedicated to 'preserving this treasure called Oregon.' Its Down By the Riverside, Adopt-A-River, and Team Up for Watershed Health programs offer Oregonians convenient, fun, and rewarding opportunities to protect and restore Oregon´s waterways and watersheds throughout the state.
Become a Master Watershed Steward.
OSU Watershed Extension's Master Watershed Steward (MWS) Program entails a series of eight interrelated topics (usually 18 classroom hours and 28 field hours) that provide comprehensive watershed education at an introductory level to watershed groups, landowners, agricultural producers, conservation districts, nursery growers, foresters, planners, teachers, urban residents, or any other interested groups and individuals.
Visit Earth Day Every Day.
Earth Day Every Day is a website provided by the Wilderness Society that offers information for students and teachers about the history of Earth Day. It also offers suggestions for activities and projects to benefit the environment.
Contact Oregon Trout.
Founded in 1983 by a small group of committed conservationists, Oregon Trout has long worked to protect and restore native fish and the habitats upon which they depend. Through its advocacy, education, and on-the-ground restoration efforts, Oregon Trout has grown into one of the largest conservation organizations in the Pacific Northwest. For more information or to join Oregon Trout please visit: www.oregontrout.org.