Coloradoans - moving forward together
David Nickum, Executive Director, Colorado TU
In an arid state in the midst of drought, rainfall is usually a blessing - yet for much of our northern Front Range this month, too much of that blessing has turned into an unimaginable disaster. From all of us at Trout Unlimited, our thoughts go out to those affected by the recent floods.
As Coloradoans pull together to rebuild in the aftermath of these floods, the first priority must be to ensure the health and safety of those who have been displaced or affected. The Help Colorado Now website offers information for volunteers who wish to help in this vital effort. Volunteerism has always been a hallmark of TU, and we encourage any members who can do so to lend time and effort in the recovery effort. At times of need we should all do what we can to help our neighbors.
Beyond the immediate recovery needs, there is an incredible amount of work to be done toward long-term restoration. Infrastructure along the affected rivers - from roads to pipelines to diversion structures - will need to be repaired or rebuilt over the coming months. As those recovery efforts move forward, we have an opportunity to encourage them to use river- and fish- friendly design for the rebuilt infrastructure. We have already been connecting with state agencies to explore ways in which TU can help in this effort - with support, volunteer manpower, technical assistance, connections to federal and other funding sources. TU has a strong track record of collaborating with landowners, irrigators, and local governments on projects to benefit rivers - the floods have created an even more urgent need for these efforts. The cornerstone of those past successes are the local relationships our members bring to the cause - helping connect TU's mission and strengths to local governments and other partners on-the-ground. Along with volunteering, you can make a difference by encouraging your local partners to consider river-friendly approaches to rebuilding and helping to connect them with TU and our partners within state government, including Colorado Parks and Wildlife, for assistance in making that possible.
As we chart our course forward, we always welcome your ideas and feedback. And as our role going forward takes shape, we will keep you informed through our website, CTU News and other email notices. And if you'd like to be added to our list of interested volunteers for restoration projects, please let us know so that we can connect you with volunteer opportunities in your area as they arise.
Thank you for helping us to make a difference.
Executive Director, Colorado TU