The Arkansas River Watershed Collaborative (ARWC) grew out of the process of wildfire and its effects on water and communities. As fires in the Arkansas River Basin and across the state were becoming more intense and frequent, the need for organized community and agency partnerships to address impacts and preserve the health of our watersheds became clear and urgent. ARWC is a response to these growing needs and a home for community-driven forest health, watershed health and post-fire collaborative efforts. ARWC is part of the Arkansas Basin Roundtable, a group of water managers and stakeholders working to find solutions to water-related issues in the basin. ARWC is the nonprofit organization for the Roundtable, and Roundtable members serve as our Board of Directors. Feedback from throughout the basin echoed the need for solutions to watershed health concerns spanning a wide variety of locally-identified challenges and shaped ARWC into what it is today. The Collaborative was formed from, and is driven by, many voices.
In 2017, ARWC became a 501c3 nonprofit and hired its first Executive Director and staff in early 2019. The Collaborative's service area spans all 23,000 square miles of the Arkansas River Basin, reaching from Leadville to the Colorado-Kansas border. Our work includes forest health and wildfire fuels mitigation, post-fire and flood recovery, stream management planning, stream restoration, collaborative development and stakeholder engagement.
OUR MISSION IS TO SERVE COLORADO'S ARKANSAS RIVER BASIN COMMUNITIES BY ADDRESSING LOCALLY-IDENTIFIED WATERSHED ISSUES FOR ECONOMIC, ECOLOGICAL & SOCIAL BENEFIT.
WE ENVISION HEALTHY WATERSHEDS & ECONOMIC PROSPERITY IN OUR BASIN