Director’s Notes: But We Have Been Working So Long…

Director’s Notes: But We Have Been Working So Long…

by Jill Ryan

Do you ever feel as though your struggle to protect your cherished lake, wetland or river has been going on forever? Do you grow tired of continuing to advocate for saving the important functions of your water resources for the benefit of the entire community?

I hear these refrains often from the dedicated and essential citizens across the Great Lakes Basin who are working so hard. Folks often feel they are struggling alone and without encouragement.

YOU ARE NOT ALONE! GLAHNF regularly communicates with about 1,700 citizens and grassroots groups all working with similar goals in mind, to protect their local community resources. Ultimately, all of these similar and critically important struggles add up not only to protect a particular river, lake or wetland in a particular place, but to the protection of our water resources across the entire Great Lakes Basin.

Your collective actions and stories do resonate with decision-makers and regulators. Because your work is echoed many times over in community after community, it begins to make an impact beyond one local jurisdiction and influences all of us fortunate enough to call this wonderful place home.

While I certainly understand how much effort and determination is required to keep moving forward on local protection battles, I encourage you to continue in your efforts. Without all of these collective voices, our water resources would tell a different story of the impacts humans can bring to their environment.

“The spirit and determination of the people to chart their own destiny is the greatest power for good in human affairs.”
– Matt Blunt



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Images courtesy of Steven Huyser-Honig,
West Grand Boulevard Collaborative, & Yellow Dog Watershed Preserve.