Our Mission

Restore value back to our streams...   Help us! 

To educate, advocate and participate in activities and scientific research that improve, protect and enhance the sustainability of the Richland Creek watershed.

We say "RCWA" (reck-wa) for short.

Our web address — www.richlandcreekwatershedalliance.org

Our Purpose and Use of Funds as stated in our Bylaws:  

RCWA is organized exclusively for charitable, scientific, literary and educational purposes within the meaning of Section 501(c)(3) of the Charitable Purposes Code, including increasing public awareness of stream conservation issues and activities; Supporting and conducting nonpartisan scientific research, educational and informational activities to increase public awareness, collaboration, and advocacy of issues in stream protection, restoration, and sustainability; and organizing and conducting restoration projects that will improve water quality and enhance riparian habitat for the Richland Creek Watershed.

About Us
Founded in 2007, RCWA was incorporated in 2008 and acquired 501c3 tax-exempt (public charity) status in 2010.  Alliance refers to members whose mutual efforts generate success for our mission.

RCWA connects stakeholders to the significance of their watershed and talks about impacts affecting streams viability.

RCWA establishes cooperative, practical and effective programs that all stakeholders can participate.

RCWA seeks partnerships with neighborhoods, businesses, government, schools, churches and environmental groups. 

RCWA reviews permits and proposals to prevent further stream degradation or increases in flood risk.

RCWA supports projects and development that address stream conservation and ecological sustainability.

Milestones
After many presentations to community leaders RCWA Founder presented a PowerPoint introducing RCWA to her neighborhood — Sylvan Park Neighborhood Association on February 12, 2007.
Over the following months neighbors and other entities became interested in RCWA and joined the RCWA network.
RCWA first to join Metro Water Services Adopt A Stream program.
The First RCWA event, Earth Day Celebration Project:  Creek Clean UP at Charlotte Avenue was conducted April 2007 with support by Nashville business, Actus Lend Lease.
RCWA began the How-to Workshop: A Rain Barrel for your Garden in 2007 (June 14 and September 19th). Retrofitting of an old barrel was used as a teaching tool and then given away to the community.

August 29, 2007 - RCWA created the Water and Me; Water and Us presentation and gave it to all West End Middle School 7th grade science study classes.

RCWA collaborates with Greenways for Nashville TrailWatcher volunteers for the 2007 Fall greenway and creek clean up event; and again for the 2008 Watershed Wide Creek Clean with other groups resulting in 7 clean up sites.

Some of our accomplishments since...
Facilitated 17 creek clean ups — removed 40 tons of stream debris

Created A Creek Story, documentary about the organization and watershed

Retrofitted 75 rain barrels, facilitated 2 rain gardens and  a stream bank stabilization project

Advocated successfully for more riparian reclaimed next to Creek for new west police precinct (54,000 sq ft).

Contributed to TWRA Instream Flow study (2 years) for Richland Creek

Secured an improved design for rerouting the Creek around the rock quarry after the 2010 Flood

Implemented stream monitoring program & conducted a targeted dissolved oxygen study 

Filed a BZA Appeal to defend Richland Creek from an outdated land use 

Engaged hundreds of stakeholders in projects and workshops

Formed many partnerships and collaborations

Submitted comments, recommendations or graphics to public hearings and community visioning opportunities

  How RCWA began...
Stakeholder, Monette Rebecca, B.S. Environmental Science discovered a need for a public alliance to protect Richland Creek soon after she moved into the area, Sylvan Park.  After observing a gully washer rain event and the large volume of NPS pollution entering the creek at Charlotte Avenue she was motivated to begin an assessment of the watershed. This led to the creation of RCWA.


About a year of visual assessment, historical research, and researching regulatory reporting for streams in the watershed followed. She created a PowerPoint presentation to introduce the Richland Creek Watershed Alliance project in January 2007, which was presented to local leaders and organizations for peer review.  The alliance’s primary objectives were introduced as: educating the public on water resource sustainability and related issues and to encourage stakeholder participation in stewardship projects and programs aimed at the protection of this historically and environmentally significant watershed.

A little history about the watershed...

The Richland Creek watershed was a hunting ground for several Native American Tribes a thousand years before settlement by American pioneers. 

In October 1770, General James Robertson led ten pioneer families from North Carolina over the East Tennessee Mountains into the Watauga River valley to settle the area which would become the first settlement of Tennessee in 1796. The Father of Tennessee also became the Father of Nashville.

Robertson built the first log cabin (1779), and later the first brick house in Nashville (1787) situated near the stream he named Richland Creek, for its' fertile soil, rich hunting and valuable waters (rich-land).  Coined the "western edge of civilization" in 1796, Richland Creek also became a battle line between the north and south in 1864.  The first road west from Nashville, originally the buffalo trail, Charlotte Road was named for the General's wife.  Richland Creek holds a historical significance for the ciy, state and nation.

Markers for Roberston's driveway and Charlotte's road were erected by Daughters of the American Revolution; and Civil War action at Richland Creek by the Nashville Historical Commission.  All historical markers are located on Charlotte Avenue (click images to enlarge).

 

 

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