December 14, 2023
Friends of Sausal Creek Selected as Recipient of SF Bay Water Quality Improvement and Youth Community Access Awards
Friends of Sausal Creek (FOSC) is excited to announce that we will receive two large awards in 2024 from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the California Natural Resources Agency (CNRA). FOSC has been awarded $200,693 from the EPA as part of the San Francisco Bay Water Quality Improvement Fund (SFBWQIF) grant program, and $298,000 over 2.5 years from CNRA as part of the Youth Community Access (YCA) grant program.
“We are so grateful for these funding opportunities which will allow FOSC to increase access to natural resources for Oakland’s youth and plan for the enhancement of the lower Sausal Creek Watershed,” said Lisa Giordano, FOSC’s Executive Director. “These projects will not only connect Oaklanders more deeply with their natural environment but also build climate resilience to withstand climate-related challenges – like wildfires and erosion – in Oakland.”
The YCA grant will enable FOSC to work in collaboration with Oakland’s Youth Employment Partnership to expand on its existing programming which connects Oakland’s youth with their local environment and engages them in environmental stewardship, education, and skills training throughout the watershed. Over 1,800 Oakland youth, ages 5-22, will participate in FOSC’s “Sausal Creek Learn and Lead” program by the conclusion of the YCA grant period in 2027.
The SFBWQIF funding will support restoration planning at William D. Wood Park in the lower portion of the Sausal Creek Watershed. Local residents and Oakland-based consulting firm Environmental Science Associates will collaborate to develop plans for native revegetation, park design, and water quality improvement at the park. Volunteers will also train and engage in invasive species management, water quality monitoring, and other stewardship practices to maintain the area’s long-term ecological health and sustain climate resiliency.
These awards are a critical step forward in advancing Friends of Sausal Creek’s efforts to increase meaningful engagement with the watershed among youth, improve the quality of Oakland’s public urban green spaces, and enhance overall ecological health of the Sausal Creek Watershed.
–Friends of Sausal Creek