RDRWA Outreach Update - Out & About (Oct & Nov 2015)


It’s hands-on, it’s real life, it’s...


An exciting new program that's been under construction for the last few months. This program is being developed through the collaboration of a number of the WPAC Outreach and Education Coordinators.

It all started with an idea! Teachers in high school have been looking for a learning opportunity lead by local experts to connect students to their watershed through real world science.


Having participated in a number of sessions around the new Alberta curriculum and citizen science, ideas began to take shape. Next steps involved going back to school through the University of New Brunswick and the Government of Canada to become a certified CABIN (Canadian Aquatic Biomonitoring Network) project manager and field technician.

Once training was complete Nathalie (Battle River Watershed Alliance), Chantelle (Beaver River Watershed Alliance) and I began the building of a water quality monitoring program that included benthic macroinvertebrate testing for high school students. We decided early in the development to make minor adaptations to this program opening up opportunities for it to be used by stewardship groups.

We had a chance to take our draft program to the Earth Matters Conference in Canmore in October this year. Here we had an opportunity to take formal and informal teachers out to Policeman creek to run through the program.

Through evaluation of this minor changes were made and then in late October we piloted the program with students from High School.

Students had a chance to run through the protocols of collecting their site, habitat and stream data.

From the feedback given at both the Earth Matters Conference and the School Pilot we headed off to the Cenovus Leadership Clinic held in Caroline in mid November.

At the Leadership Clinic through a variety of workshops and team working time we were able to set timelines and begin work on the final draft, while enjoying the beautiful setting of the Red Deer River Watershed in the Foothills.

Thanks in part to funding from Environment Canada's Environmental Damages Fund and Enbridge, we look forward to launching the program in the spring of 2016!

Submitted by Joey Temple - Outreach Coordinator

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