Volunteers Keep the County’s Streams Clean

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Provided by Prince William County

There are about 1,100 miles of streams in Prince William County. Dedicated people throughout the community volunteer their time to clean them up.

The Prince William Soil & Water Conservation District (PWSWCD) coordinates the Adopt-A-Stream program for the Environmental Services Division of the Prince William County Department of Public Works. The program consists of volunteers who agree to pick up litter along the streams they adopt. Environmental Services provides partial funding for the program because it directly supports their efforts.

Scout troops, civic clubs, schools, school clubs, individuals, families, businesses, sports teams, church groups, home-school groups or any other organization can volunteer to adopt a stream, said Veronica Tangiri, the Adopt-A-Stream water quality monitoring coordinator. “Anybody in the community, any organization, anybody who cares about our drinking water can adopt any stretch of stream.”

In 2017, 892 volunteers picked up about 25,892 pounds of trash from county streams and storm water management ponds, which can also be adopted.

The conservation district is always looking for volunteers to adopt a more streams.

The PWSWCD only asks that the groups commit to clean a least a quarter of a mile of their adopted stream once, maybe twice a year, for a minimum of two years. In return, they’ll get a sign posted at the stream site with the name of their group on it, Tangiri said. “We will put up that sign at the adopted site to showcase the organization’s stewardship in the community.”

The Neighborhood Services Division helps with hauling away the trash, Tangiri said.

According to conservation district documentation, volunteers saved the county about $12,415 by cleaning up streams and storm water management ponds.

For more information on how to adopt a stream, call PWSWCD at 571-379-7514 or email waterquality@pwswcd.org.



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