First Things First

The Wheatley River Improvement Group, WRIG, is a non-profit community organization. The vision of WRIG, as stated in the 2007 Wheatley River Stewardship Plan, is one

“of a watershed in which the soil, forests and water are healthy and supportive of a rich diversity of aquatic and terrestrial plants and animals. In this vision, the Wheatley River watershed is one in which farmers and fishers are able to make a living for generations to come and where all residents have access to clean, healthy water.”

The Stewardship Plan is guided by a number of principles:

  • Promotion of a healthy and stable environment.
  • The involvement of people who live in the watershed and those who derive their livelihoods from it in developing, monitoring and adjusting the plan and putting it into action.
  • Recognition and celebration of stewardship initiatives that have a positive effect on the environment.
  • Recognition that we are part of a larger system of interconnected watersheds.

The Plan also has a number of goals:

  • Support and promote positive environmental stewardship initiatives.
  • Influence appropriate development, monitoring and enforcement of public policy relating to the environment.
  • Support those residents who make their living as primary producers in the watershed.
  • Improve water quality.
  • Increase community involvement in watershed enhancement efforts.
  • Promote a wider sense of community within the watershed.

To achieve these goals, WRIG has several initiatives, including hiring a summer work crew (this year, Sam Arnold and Adam Vessey); publishing a newsletter once or more each year, distributed to residents of the watershed and highlighting key issues as well as giving updates on work done; maintaining a small tree nursery for use in stream plantings and in a yearly fall tree giveaway; and several others.