The Watershed Stewards Project was established in 1994 as a comprehensive, community-based watershed restoration and education program. Members serve in coastal watersheds throughout California, supporting the WSP mission to conserve, restore and enhance anadromous watersheds for future generations.
In collaboration with commercial and sport fishing industry representatives, timber companies, teachers, community members, non-profit organizations, and public agencies, the WSP partnership works to revitalize watersheds that contain endangered and threatened species by conducting monitoring and carrying out state-of-the-art watershed recovery techniques.
During their year of service, members learn and implement advanced watershed assessment procedures, participate in in-stream and up-slope restoration activities, and engage community members in volunteer projects.
WSP Staff Bios
Carrie Lewis - Project Director
Jody Weseman - Project Manager
Zia Schatz - Office Manager
Emily Afriat-Hyman - Member Coordinator
The mission of the AmeriCorps Watershed Stewards Project is to conserve, restore and enhance anadromous watersheds for future generations by linking education with high-quality scientific practices.
A project of the California Conservation Corps, WSP is administered by CaliforniaVolunteers and sponsored by the Corporation for National and Community Service.
Qualifications: Minimum of 25 semester units of science and/or equivalent scientific fieldwork/study; strong interest in natural resources; dedication to serving the community full-time. Also, you have to be 21 years old and either a U.S. Citizen, National, or Lawful Permanent Resident Alien.
Duration: 10.5 months and a minimum of 1,700 hours total
Stipend: $13,600 total (approximately $1,312 per month)
Benefits: No-cost Health Insurance, Child Care Provisions (eligibility requirements for child care benefits apply), Student Loan Forbearance (for most loans), and Numerous Training and Professional Development Opportunities
Educational Award: $5,550 upon completion of the 10.5-month / 1700 hour term
WSP members serve a minimum of 1700 hours under the mentorship of natural resource professionals throughout California's coastal communities. Their 10.5 month term of service begins in October and runs through mid-August. Each WSP placement site engages two or more members in all of the following service activity areas. Each site's overall strategy, emphasis, effort, and timing of service activities varies based on location.
Watershed Recovery Activities (80%)
but not limited to: invasive removal; rebuilding, restoring and expanding
riparian buffers; seed collection and propagation; installing large woody
debris; remove/improve fish passage barriers, monitoring culverts, water
quality and water quantity monitoring; road decommissioning and fire fuel
reduction; installing and maintaining water catchment systems and rain water
gardens; collecting and analyzing data needed to establish project goals; and
maintenance of restoration projects.
Professional Development (10%)
Members attend a variety of trainings to enhance technical watershed / fisheries skills and professional development
• Orientation: members are trained in Swift Water Rescue, Wilderness First Aid/CPR, and WSP program policies and procedures
• Monthly Webinars/Conference Calls
• Site specific trainings: each placement site trains their members in the skills necessary to complete tasks assigned throughout the member’s term of service
• Additional trainings may include: Salmon Restoration Federation Conference and Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education Conference
Volunteer Recruitment (10%)
Members engage community members in hands-on watershed restoration through the coordination of two Individual Service Projects (ISPs)
• Create public service announcements and media releases to recruit volunteers
• Outline and present safety considerations for each event
• Engage students, teachers, and community members in hands-on restoration projects
Watershed Stewards Project’s (WSP) Real Science Watershed Education Program aims to provide classrooms with quality watershed and salmonid lessons that students can apply to understanding their local watersheds. The Real Science Program is a six-visit interactive series of lessons (generally one hour per week), which focuses on California’s coastal watersheds, watershed-related topics and salmonid species, salmon and trout, provided at no cost to schools within our project communities. Trained WSP members typically present the series in pairs and can accommodate K-12 classrooms of approximately 30 students.
The Real Science curriculum is aligned with California State Content Standards and can be tailored to incorporate additional standards. Opportunities to incorporate field trips and service learning projects can be explored as well.
Overall the education component of the WSP program has been extremely successful. Since the programs creation in 1994, WSP members have instructed 37,362 students using the Real Science curriculum on salmon lifecycles, watershed processes and best land-use practices, as well as shared scientifically-based salmon and watershed restoration information with 203,842 students and community members.
For any questions or requests to participate in the WSP Real Science program, please contact the WSP Team Leader at 707-725-8601 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
WSP members also offer single visits for teachers who may not have the time for the extended visits, but would still like to incorporate some watershed education. These single visits vary and can include fish dissections, a salmonid life-cycle slide show presentation or educational games and art projects.
Members help strengthen communities through environmentally-based public outreach activities that include assisting in the organization of environmental education fairs, delivering presentations to community members and service groups, coordinating a hands-on community restoration project, and staffing public information booths at fairs and other public events.
For any questions or requests to participate in the WSP Real Science program, please contact the WSP Team Leader at 707-725-8601 or by email at email@example.com.
Watershed Stewards Project
1455-C Sandy Prairie Ct
Fortuna, CA 95540
Phone: (707) 725-8601
Fax: (707) 725-8602
Satellite WSP Office
1530 Madera Ave
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
Phone: (805) 542-8461
Fax: (877) 568-8937