With 2013 behind us, we reflect upon the successes of the past year and look ahead to 2014 with excitement for what’s to come. The new year brings an opportunity to reach greater heights than ever before by improving upon past years’ progress. For some, this means starting a more vigorous diet and exercise routine or vowing to spend more time with family. For the Illinois River Watershed Partnership, it means taking action in conservation.

The Illinois River Watershed Partnership invites you to join us in our 2014 efforts to improve the land and water of our beautiful watershed in northwestern Arkansas and northeastern Oklahoma.


UofA Rock Camp


Though it is frequently used in an environmental context, the word “conservation” represents an action-oriented mindset that can be made applicable to almost any career or lifestyle. The Illinois River Watershed Partnership is made up of a diverse array of stakeholders who share a common interest in preserving, protecting, and restoring the land and water of the Illinois River Watershed.

These conservation leaders are farmers, politicians, business professionals, private landowners, architects, engineers, scientists, educators, and students, and the list certainly doesn’t stop there.

So, besides the passion for conservation, what do these leaders have in common?  They are perceptive.  They savor their surroundings.  They are curious.  They are engaged.

They Make It Count



horsebarn trail

1.  Awareness

They mindfully observe the natural resources and processes occurring around them.  They take note of the interconnectedness of modern society and nature, recognizing the economic, environmental, and social benefits of conserving natural resources.  They notice the environmental changes that come with modified use of our land.


Plein Air Workshop

2.  Appreciation

They recognize the special gifts of nature and spend time outdoors.  This may take the shape of a vigorous hike, a breath-taking ride down the river, or an afternoon marveling at the native birds in our region.  Their appreciation could be expressed in a passion for gardening, or an attempt to capture the beauty of our surroundings in painting or photography.  They stop and smell the roses.


Prairie Grove East Class

3.  Education

They have a thirst for knowledge and remain informed about conservation-related issues and determine their role in the solution.  They welcome opportunities to learn more about the land and water around them through organizations, public events and online resources (like our website, blog, Facebook and e-newsletters). They engage in community discussion to better understand stakeholder perspectives.


Volunteer Mom & Daughter Mud Creek cleanup

4.  Action

They participate in the implementation of solutions and share their knowledge with others.   They give of their time and their talent.  They realize that the most critical aspect to make change happen is to get involved — to take Action.




Each month in 2014, the IRWP will feature a person or group of people who are doing their part to preserve, protect and restore our watershed.  Help us shine the light on these inspiring people.

Send your nomination to us by email at contact@irwp.org, or make them directly in the comments field below!

Take the Action Challenge

Make 2014 the year that you put your Passion for our rivers, lakes and streams into Action.  Make It Count in 2014…  Sign up to Take the Action Challenge!


Related Posts:

Are You Willing to Take the Challenge?

Coming Together for Good

2013 Golden Paddle Award Winners


Related Resources:

2014 Action Challenge

2014 Riparian Project

2014 Calendar of Events