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Frequently Asked Questions

Want to learn more about the program and how to make an impact? This is the place to be! 

If you do not see your question here, please head over to the contact page and shoot us a message!

How much does it cost to become a volunteer?

Becoming a volunteer for the Darby Creek Community Monitoring project is absolutely free! We work hard to secure grants and donations to keep this program at no cost to the community. 


What kind of commitment does a volunteer need to make?

We ask all volunteers to attend two trainings: one group training that introduces the science of water quality monitoring and the kind of equipment we use, and one individual training at the assigned site where we provide support and answer questions about data collection. The combined trainings take about 2.5 to 3 hours and are required to become a volunteer.  We ask that all volunteers commit at least six months of data collection up front. 


What is the data used for?

The data that is being collected throughout the watershed is being used to create a baseline understanding of what is happening in the watershed. It takes several years of data collection to understand what "normal" stream function looks like. We are using the data to identify healthy areas of the watershed to protect and unhealthy sections of the watershed to restore.  Over time, we hope to use this data to locate high impact areas of the watershed were we can work to increase healthy bank areas, reduce the amount of storm flow and flooding in the lower watershed, and restore water quality. 


I can't volunteer for the program but I want to make a difference in my area. What can I do?

We recognize that this community science project is not a good fit for everyone! With that in mind, we keep the forum and blogs up to date with opportunities for stream cleanups, tree plantings and other events that help improve the health of the watershed. Check in your area for opportunities or give it a shot yourself: 

  • Everything that happens on the landscape impacts the health of the waterway, so planting native trees and wildflowers supports local wildlife as well as helps increase the amount of water that soaks into the soil. Every plant matters!

  • Litter blows into the trees and shrubs near waterways and can eventually make it into local streams and rivers, where it then flows out into the ocean. Pick up trash when you see it on the landscape to help reduce the plastic pollution in our waterways and oceans!

  • Seeing a lot of salt in the wintertime? Sweep up excess salt after the snow and ice has melted to reduce how much is entering the soil and water. If you see big piles on the road after the snow and ice is gone, call your local municipality or environmental advisory committee to report it!

Image by Mitchell Kmetz

Get in Touch

Every action a person takes can make a difference. We want to hear from you if you are looking for ways to make a difference in your community!

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