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Master Watershed Steward Program Information Sessions

Master Watershed Steward Program Information Sessions


Volunteer Stewards enhance our watersheds and protect our streams and rivers

The Cumberland County Penn State Extension is launching its Master Watershed Steward (MWS) Program! This program, already active and making a difference in 17 other counties in Pennsylvania, recruits community volunteers with an interest in water quality and natural resource conservation. The volunteers are formally trained in classroom and hands-on settings in environmental resources, stewardship, and education. Stewards are then engaged in watershed education, research, and restoration projects throughout Cumberland County.

To become a certified MWS, a 40-hour training program and 50 hours of volunteer service are required in the first year. Certification is maintained in subsequent years by contributing a minimum of 20 volunteer hours and 10 hours of continuing education annually.

Examples of Steward projects include installing rain and pollinator gardens, participating in streamside or community habitat enhancement projects/plantings, conducting stream clean-ups, organizing educational workshops that address such topics as backyard habitat or homeowner stormwater management, writing newsletter articles, developing educational materials, and working with schools to provide meaningful watershed educational in-class and field experiences.

The new 12-session training program will begin in spring 2020. Classes will be held at the Penn State Extension Cumberland County office (Cumberland Services Center, Allen Road Campus) and at partner organizations throughout Cumberland County. The curriculum also features three hands-on Saturday field trips. Come to either of our two information sessions to learn more.

For more information about the Master Watershed Steward Program, costs and volunteer commitment, or to request an application for the 2020 training program, contact coordinator Holly Smith at 717-240-6505 or email Visit Applications are due by January 31st, 2020.

Master Watershed Steward Program Information Sessions