A reading of the recent report on the fine work that river conservation group American Rivers is doing to protect and restore important fish habitat highlights that it’s important to consider how a river-based group of guides can help groups like theirs to help the rivers we all depend upon. There’s no doubt that we all care deeply about our rivers. Many of us are engaged in conservation and give a lot of our time, energy, and maybe money to help out. To those people like Tim Linehan, Pat Pendergast, Scott Sanchez, Tom Hargrove, Mike Dawes, and many others, please keep doing what you do. For the rest of us who would like to do more to help improve the health of our rivers but haven’t seen an easy way to do that, let me offer a few simple ideas:
- Join one of the great groups that do good work for the rivers, such as American Rivers, TU, CalTrout, or whatever is your favorite organization. American Rivers has their River Ambassador program, TU has their TU Business program, and others probably have similar programs for businesses to join. Pick one you identify with, and take that step.
- Host a dinner or happy hour for one of these groups with some of your best, most conservation-minded clients. For American Rivers, Steve White would be glad to talk with you to set something up (swhite@AmericanRivers.org). The other groups likely have contacts as well that you can get from their websites.
- Share with your clients how important river conservation is, either through Facebook, newsletters, etc., and encourage them to join one of the groups you’d recommend (www.AmericanRivers.org/AnglersFund, TU.org, etc.).
Here’s where you can find the report, and hopefully it’ll get you thinking about ways to support these efforts. There are so many threats that our rivers (and therefore our businesses) face, whether it’s from mining like on the Smith River, proposed dams like on the Green in Wyoming, or spills like on the Yellowstone or the Animas. In this season of giving, please join me in taking some time to see how we can give back to the rivers you love and depend on.