Many of us have a story about what makes the Willamette special to us. At December’s Within Our Reach conference, dozens of members of the Willamette community shared theirs on-camera.
Their stories reflect the many benefits provided by the largest waterway within Oregon’s borders. The Willamette is sustenance for family farms. A place forearning. A source of cultural and spiritual connection. A good spot for a summer swim.
Watch the video below to hear four Willamette Basin residents discuss why this river system matters to them. Then, tweet @WillametteNet or tag us on Facebook with the hashtag #whythewillamette to share your own reasons why in one to two sentences. You can also email us your response if you’re not the tweeting type. We’ll share responses on social media as part of a public effort to spread love for the Willamette.
The successes our partners and grantees have achieved in WRI’s lifetime are impressive. But we have always known that restoring a river basin as large, complex and important as the Willamette will take a collaborative effort for decades to come.
Today, we are excited to unveil the blueprint for a new way to support that long-term effort: The Willamette River Network.
This community-driven Network will unite partners working toward a shared goal: A healthy Willamette River system with engaged, diverse leadership, in which communities and rivers thrive together. The Network will support our collective efforts to build upon the innovations of the past decade for even greater progress. At the core of this new Network will be a backbone organization to:
In it, you’ll find a visualization of the Network structure, information about the Network’s mission and how it will work in service to that mission, and a timeline of our plan to build the Network.