Creek Stewardship Program: A partnership of Citizens, the City of Santa Rosa, and the Sonoma County Water Agency
Creek restoration, education, and recreation opportunities
The Creek Stewardship Program offers citizens who live, travel, and recreate along Santa Rosa’s creeks the opportunity to protect and enhance the creeks they enjoy. An informed, supportive, and proactive community strengthens desirable qualities such as wildlife habitat and public safety while reducing problems such as illicit dumping, water pollution, illegal camping, bank erosion and growth of non-native invasive plants. The program’s objectives are to:
1. Increase the public’s awareness of the values provided by local creeks by providing creek restoration, education, and recreation activities in conjunction with community partners.
2. Support volunteer Creek Stewards who serve as additional “eyes, ears and voice” to identify and report undesirable conditions and activities. Creek Stewards also perform minor maintenance and monitoring tasks and provide suggestions to enhance creek areas.
3. Provide timely and effective response to citizens’ concerns regarding creek related maintenance, environmental, safety, and recreational issues.
The Creek Stewardship Program draws from the multitude of community resources to increase the public’s appreciation and support for the environmental and social benefits provided by urban creeks. Activities include walks, bike rides, nature interpretation, tree planting, restoration work days, presentations on creek topics, and creek activities for youth programs. Working together, the Water Agency, the City, and its citizens can enhance creek corridors to provide efficient transportation routes, safe neighborhoods, scenery, wildlife habitat, recreation and social interaction.
Become a Creek Steward
Creek Stewards provide a vital link between the community and the governments and agencies responsible for the protection and care of creeks. Anyone who spends a little time along creeks can volunteer as a Creek Steward. Ideally, Creek Stewards are able to keep and eye out for any creek needs or disturbances during their normal routines.
Besides having fun, Creek Stewards:
- adopt and care for a specific reach of creek near their neighborhood, school, or business
- receive background information on the condition and goals for Santa Rosa’s creeks
- receive training to recognize and report conditions such as water pollution, habitat degradation, and unlawful activities
- help maintain creekside areas by picking up litter, removing non-native invasive plants, and caring for restoration areas
- commit to monitoring and caring for their reach of creek
- provide suggestions for the enhancement of creeks
- alert the Program Coordinator, appropriate City department, or responsible agency to problems
Creek Stewards may represent neighborhoods, groups, businesses, or participate as individuals. Volunteers may choose to have signs posted acknowledging their contributions to the community. A Program Coordinator assists Creek Stewards’ activities and expedites follow through on reports regarding trash removal, water quality, natural habitat, recreational opportunities, trail maintenance, neighborhood safety and other situations that arise.