Tuesday, October 13, 2009



Grant revenue is critical to our mission and directly supports the implementation of RRF's mission through:
  • Conservation – costs associated with land purchase, land protection planning as Milwaukee’s urban rivers land trust
  • Restoration – removal of harmful invasive plant species and planting of native trees and plants on our conserved properties, improving habitat and water quality
  • Education - Ecological Restoration summer crew – “Earn & Learn” program participants, River Quests and volunteer engagement
  • Public Access – trails and plans to connect communities and people to the river valley

Grants awarded to support our urban conservation, river protection efforts include:
  • Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources $75,000
  • Helen Bader Foundation $20,000
  • Wisconsin Energy Corporation Foundation $10,000
  • Forest County Potawatomi Community Foundation $7,000

Recent Grant News:

Southeastern Wisconsin Watershed Trust and its Environmental Partners Get Boost to Improve Water Quality in the Milwaukee River Basin
$1.9 million Joyce Foundation grant awarded over 3 years!
River Revitalization Foundation receives $70,000 allocation as Urban Rivers Land Trust partner

MILWAUKEE -- The Southeastern Wisconsin Watersheds Trust (SWWT)- also known as the “ Sweet Water Trust” - received a major boost in its campaign to improve water quality in the Milwaukee River Basin with a three year $1.9 million grant from the Joyce Foundation. SWWT is an umbrella organization that was formed to improve the region’s water resources through collaborative efforts.

The grant supports seven state and local environmental groups and the Trust to develop projects that will produce measurable improvements in water quality and habitat starting with the Menomonee and Kinnickinnic River Watersheds. This is a unique collaborative effort among nonprofits, governments, universities and other entities working to use waters natural boundaries, or watersheds, in making improvements in water quality and habitat. The Joyce Foundation grant will help build the collaborative effort to establish project priorities, support sound science and analyze complex policy issues, all toward improving water quality and habitat and the health and economic strength of communities in the Greater Milwaukee Watersheds.

“This investment provides enormous momentum toward making measurable improvements in our water quality,” stated Pat Marchese, Chairman of the Sweet Water Trust Executive Steering Council. “The grant will enable the Trust and its environmental partners to work collaboratively to build community support for implementing cost effective water quality improvement projects in the Greater Milwaukee Watersheds.”

In addition to the Trust, the environmental partners receiving funding are: 1000 Friends of Wisconsin, Clean Wisconsin, Midwest Environmental Advocates, Milwaukee RiverKeeper, River Alliance of Wisconsin, River Revitalization Foundation, and Sixteenth Street Community Health Center. Each group brings a particular function and expertise to this water quality improvement effort including the following activities:
  • Engage businesses, municipalities and the people who live in the watershed in the watershed planning process and ensure that innovative, cost effective approaches are taken to improve water resources.
  • Improve the quality and quantity of data collected by both citizens and agencies to ensure that watershed restoration plans are developed and implemented based on sound science.
  • Identify and advance innovative policies and legal tools best suited to bring about the improved water quality and water resources goals of the Trust.
  • Raise the awareness of the Trust in the Greater Milwaukee Watersheds and recruit and involve a broad constituency engaged in water quality and habitat improvements and coordinated watershed restoration.
  • Create an integrated and long lasting structure that supports watershed restoration through collaborative efforts throughout the entire Greater Milwaukee Watersheds and nearshore Lake Michigan.
This grant represents the Joyce Foundation’s second substantial commitment to watershed restoration. The first was a three year, $5 million effort in the Maumee River basin in Northeast Indiana, Northwest Ohio, and Southeast Michigan. This effort focused on urban stormwater pollution, agricultural runoff, wetland protection and restoration, and contaminated sediment clean up.

Sweet Water Trust is a collaborative effort to achieve healthy and sustainable water resources throughout the Greater Milwaukee Watersheds. It is a non-governmental, non-taxing, voluntary organization. Members of the Trust include representatives of local, county and state governments, non-governmental organizations, university academics and business and community leaders.

Based in Chicago, the Joyce Foundation supports efforts to protect the Great Lakes, to reduce poverty and violence in the region, and to ensure its residents have good schools, decent jobs, a strong democracy, and a diverse and thriving culture.

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The mission of the River Revitalization Foundation is to establish a parkway for public access, walkways, recreation and education, bordering the Milwaukee, Menomonee and Kinnickinnic Rivers; to use the rivers to revitalize surrounding neighborhoods; and to improve water quality.

The River Revitalization Foundation is a certified non-profit 501(c)(3) conservation organization

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