RIPARIAN HEALTH FOLLOW UP – MAKING MORE OF PAST INVESTMENTSCategory: 2018, Current, Grant, Major Project, Water
This follow-up focused project allows Cows and Fish to capture and showcase past successes in improved riparian management and health. While the ‘all-done’-in-one-year funding approach is great for building and creating small things, it misses the key role of learning, building ecological literacy, skill development and growth that supports a stewardship ethic, and the required time to change social norms, let alone implement actual changes that take time and money, and then see measurable ecological improvements.
Cows and Fish is about taking awareness, to action and ethic, but it requires repetition, continuity and a long-term commitment that is based upon putting the knowledge, tools and decision making in the hands of those who control the management of land – landowners and land managers. Cows and Fish dedicate this funding to follow up on past work that will result in more improved riparian management and health, and allow us to capture, share and showcase successes.
Cows and Fish will use this grant to go back and follow up with the people they have already worked with, and who have already started down the road of riparian learning and management. Their recent program evaluation showed that 87% of people (of 270) wanted a follow up, and many indicated they had stories to share, including if riparian health had changed based on their efforts.
Cows and Fish will re-engage, motivate, support and educate landowners on riparian management. In the short term, Cows and Fish will have a better understanding of barriers, motivations and changes made (or not made), to apply to their future work. In the long term this will lead to more educated, skilled and involved landowners, with healthier riparian areas – improving water quality, watershed resiliency, biodiversity and sustainable primary production.