Because nonpoint source pollution is generally not addressed by regulatory programs, reducing pollution in Illinois lakes and streams depends on voluntary efforts by people to develop, fund, and carry out clean water projects. Watershed groups and organizations must partner and build their skill set to achieve their clean water goals. This workshop taught participants how to increase participation in their watershed management efforts, work together, effectively communicate, and reach their target audience.
TOPICS AND PRESENTERS:
This full-day workshop was held twice in 2009, in northern Illinois (Lisle) on November 12 (Lisle agenda) and in central Illinois (Peoria) on November 13 (Peoria agenda). TetraTech, a U.S. EPA consultant, presented the following:
- using U.S. EPA’s on-line tools for building partnerships and conducting watershed outreach campaigns
- increasing participation in your watershed management efforts
- utilizing and retaining volunteers
- creating awareness of watershed issues
- conveying your message to a specific audience
- motivating people to change their behavior to make a positive impact on water quality
- evaluating your outreach effort
To address using and retaining volunteers, we invited three Illinois environmental organizations to serve as case studies and speak about their volunteer programs. In Lisle, both the Flint Creek Watershed Partnership and the Indian Creek Watershed Project presented; in Peoria, The Conservation Foundation spoke.
In advance of the workshop, the TetraTech consultant provided registrants with a self-evaluation worksheet to help them prepare for a small group activity to be facilitated the day of the workshop. During the workshop, attendees broke into small groups and brainstormed about their real-life projects to build partnerships in their watershed groups. The consultant was able to provide personal feedback to each small group. She was able to refer directly to the concepts the participants had been learning throughout the workshop, and support them as they strategized about building partnerships.
- Getting in Step – A Guide for Conducting Watershed Outreach Campaigns (pdf – 3.27 mb)
- Guidance for Developing Watershed Action Plans in Illinois (2007) (pdf – 3.87 mb)
CASE STUDIES ON RECRUITING AND RETAINING VOLUNTEERS:
- In Lisle: Indian Creek Watershed Project, 1999-2009 (pdf – 9.40 mb)
- In Peoria: Citizens for Conservation – Flint Creek Watersehed (pdf – 6.98 mb)