When we come together, we can accomplish extraordinary things. Join the growing number of people who, in their different ways, are taking action to protect rivers and nature, and find solutions to the climate crisis.
There are many ways you can get involved, depending on what you’re good at, and what you care about. There are also different types of groups to join, from global organizations to local community groups. Some focus on particular climate or nature related issues, like conservation, politics and justice. You may also choose to act through a group you are already a part of - a student group, faith group, or sports team - by encouraging them to participate in water protection initiatives.
Find a group working on issues and solutions that matter most to you, and choose how you would like to get involved.
There are many river groups who would welcome your skills and support. Below are some ideas to get you started.
Wherever you are, there are plenty of river conservation groups that you can join. In the US, examples include Riverkeeper, Clearwater, Bronx River Alliance, Friends of the LA River, and Idaho Rivers United. If you’re in Europe you can consider joining Drinkable Rivers, Surfers Against Sewage, Rivers Trust, Save The Wye among others. In Africa you can join or take inspiration from The Litterboom Project and Very Nile and in Asia you can find Green Hanoi, Sungai Watch and many more.
There are many great organizations that might be available in your area, and unfortunately we can’t name them all. To find more, try searching for a few key words that matter to you and the location you live in. For example, you could search for “river cleanup near me” and your favorite sport, hobby or skill and the city or region you live in.
If you are already a member of a group that may not deal directly with rivers (yet), consider encouraging them to do so. One way is to take inspiration or join larger nature networks like the ones outlined in the the Lewis Pugh Foundation’s River Warriors.
Climate expert Dr. Ayana Johnson suggests a simple exercise - think about what needs to be done, what you’re good at and what brings you joy. Climate and conservation groups around the world need people with all sorts of skills and experience - design, art, education, languages, storytelling, writing, and more. Every skill helps! Think about what you love and do best and find a group that’s right for you.
If you’re having trouble finding a group, you can always start your own. Many national or global groups will provide you with the resources and guidance to set up a local chapter.
By taking action with us, you will be part of one of the most important moments in history. As Dr. Erica Chenoweth from Harvard University says “We should never underestimate the power of community organizing and mass mobilization. When people join together to express their power, remarkable change can happen.”
When you connect with others to demand changes that go beyond your own home, you amplify your individual power. Through your group, you will be connected to more resources and made aware of local opportunities to bring about change.
Joining a river group can also help give you that extra courage, motivation, and support needed to take action for rivers. You’ll meet people with similar priorities and interests, so you might find that it’s a lot more enjoyable getting involved as a team.
Climate expert Dr. Ayana Johnson suggests finding the overlap between “what are you good at?” , “what is the work that needs doing?” and “what brings you joy?”
Joining people who also care about making a difference “empowers the people themselves, and it greatly amplifies their individual power,” Dr. Anthony Leiserowitz
“Mass movements have helped bring an end to legalized slavery, colonialism, child labor exploitation, sexist voting laws, and discrimination against people because of their gender, sexual orientation, class, and various other forms of tyranny. When people skillfully organize their communities into action, build economic and political pressure, and shift the political game, they can create truly transformative change."