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AUBURN UNIVERSITY, Ala. – Water is one of the most valuable natural resources in Alabama. In its most basic form, water affects nearly all living organisms. What is the best way to ensure that this vital resource remains protected? Responsibility.

Much of Alabama’s drinking water comes from surface water. It is everyone’s responsibility to protect waterways because they belong to everyone. Watershed stewardship makes all the difference in the longevity of Alabama’s natural resources.

About Alabama Watershed Stewards

The Alabama Watershed Stewards (AWS) program at Auburn University uses a special approach to involve people in addressing local water quality concerns. Each year this program provides people with the knowledge and tools they need to begin making a positive change in their watersheds.

The AWS program offers state-wide educational trainings to the public. Additionally, AWS offers online trainings and resources as it strives to create favorable conditions for long-term change by building social infrastructure, localizing water quality issues and providing tangible steps for improvement. You can find Alabama Watershed Stewards resources on the Alabama Extension website at www.aces.edu.

Housed under the Auburn University Water Resources Center, AWS promotes healthy watersheds by increasing knowledge of water pollution while providing the necessary tools to prevent and resolve local water quality problems. Activities are led by the Auburn University Water Resources Center, (Alabama Cooperative Extension System Water Program in partnership with Alabama Water Watch) and various local partners.

AWW Opportunities in 2022Alabama Watershed Stewards Logo

Alabama Watershed Stewards will be hosting several trainings this year. Each of these gatherings intend to promote healthy watersheds, increase citizen understanding of watershed pollution and provide people with the tools they need to prevent and resolve local watershed issues.

Alabama Watershed Stewards Trainings

AWS trainings are one-day, in-person trainings across the state focused on specific watersheds. They seek the goal of increasing citizen awareness and knowledge about the function of watersheds, their potential impairments and local watershed protection strategies. The program will also include practical information about local watersheds groups, partnership opportunities and provide engaging tools for encouraging individuals to take leadership roles in improving their local water quality.

Event Information

  • $20 registration
  • Fee covers lunch and an Alabama Watershed Stewards handbook.
  • There are 0.6 Continuing Education Units available for those who complete the training.
  • Registration link: http://aub.ie/alabamawatershed

Current Scheduled Events

Watershed Management Planning Workshops

Wherever you live, you live within a watershed. A watershed is a naturally defined area of land that channels rainfall and snowmelt to creeks, streams and rivers. Eventually, these sources outflow to points such as reservoirs, bays and oceans. Watershed management planning workshops are also one-day, in-person workshops about watershed planning.

The land-use activities in your watershed can ultimately influence the quality of water in a region. Citizens can become involved with improving local water quality through watershed planning efforts. Watershed planning is an integrated approach to responsible resource management by considering the watershed as a whole.

The process involves several factors. These areas include: targeting problem areas in a watershed, promoting awareness and involvement of stakeholders and developing solutions to identified problems.

In this watershed planning workshop you will learn about:

  1. Watershed planning
  2. The basics of watershed management
  3. How to get involved with local groups and organizations

If you would like to become a citizen science water quality monitor via Alabama Water Watch, you can also sign up for their workshop which is held in conjunction with this training.

Event Information

  • $20 registration
  • Fee covers lunch and an Alabama Watershed Stewards handbook.
  • There are 0.6 Continuing Education Units available for those who complete the training.
  • Registration link: http://aub.ie/watershedmanagement

Current Scheduled Events

  • Thursday, August 18 from
    • 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
    • Millbrook YMCA
    • 4700 Camp Grandview Rd, Millbrook, Alabama 36054
  • Thursday, September 29
    • 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
    • Enterprise Farmers Market
    • 525 N Main St, Enterprise, Alabama 36330

Online Alabama Watershed Stewards Course

If you are unable to make it to one of the in-person events, but would still like to learn about watershed stewardship, you may enroll in our free online course. Participants move through various topic modules, experiencing video lectures, discussion sections and quizzes. There are 0.7 Continuing Education Units available for those who complete all course requirements.

Sign up for the online AWS course at: http://aub.ie/awsonline

Special Topic Trainings and Affiliated Events

Special topic workshops will be announced throughout the year. Topics are expected to include the following:

  • Installing a rain garden
  • Grant funding for small non-profits and watershed groups
  • Professional trainings on low-impact development
  • Litter removal campaign strategies
  • Water quality monitoring trainings with Alabama Water Watch

Current Scheduled Events

  • How to Install a Rain Garden Workshop – Friday, May 13 from 9 to 11 a.m.
  • Grant Writing Basics for Environmental and Watershed Groups – Thursday, September 22 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
    • CASIC Building
    • 570 Devall Drive, Auburn, Alabama
  • Alabama Water Watch Monitoring Training – Friday, September 30 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

More Information

To find out about upcoming events in the new year, follow the Alabama Watershed Stewards Instagram account or contact stewards@auburn.edu to be added to the mailing list.

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