Forever Our Rivers Grant Programs
Launched in 2018, our Community Grants are focused on improving wetlands and wildlife habitat and sustaining flows. They are also focused on connecting communities to their rivers.
In Gunnison County, Colorado we funded a transformative project at Taylor Creek, the headwaters of the Gunnison River, which flows into the Colorado River. High Country Conservation Alliance partnered with state and federal agencies to install more than 150 beaver dam structures. Made of natural materials like willows, conifer and mud, these dams began almost instantly to rewet 30 acres of historic wetlands.
Further west, a new boat ramp will provide ideal access for Delta and Montrose County river enthusiasts. It also enables a broader diversity of people to enjoy float trips in an area where previous access points were 15 miles apart. Grant recipients include both Colorado West Land Trust and the West Slope Conservation Center. The partners will improve 8.5 acres of riparian habitat by planting native shrubs and trees.
They will also empower volunteers and engage youth through multiple workshops focused on riparian plants and long-term monitoring and maintenance.
Colorado Canyons Association helps thousands of kids and adults connect with nature. That’s a win-win, as volumes of research found that spending time in nature reduces stress and promotes healing. A grant from Forever Our Rivers will support day river trips for members of Partners-West, a nonprofit dedicated to building one-to-one mentoring between youth age 6-17, and caring adults. Funding also provides overnight river trips for students at Diné College, a public tribal land-grant college. For many, it is their first-time rafting. For others, the educational component strengthens their knowledge of rivers and the challenges they face.
“Over 220 species of birds breed and nest along the Verde River. They require a healthy, flowing Verde River and funding from Forever Our Rivers has allowed us to continue the important work of ensuring that our riverside habitat is healthy. To me, river restoration means more fish, more birds, more river otters and more wildlife that call this river home.” – Nancy, Friends of the Verde River