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P.O. Box 1536, Silver City, NM 88062
Grant Received County Amount
Outdoor Equity Fund 2021 Grant County $5,500
Outdoor Equity Fund 2023 Grant County $27,450
Total Grants Awarded $32,950

Founded in 1996, the Upper Gila Watershed Alliance (UGWA) is a watershed protection nonprofit working to promote the long-term health of the Upper Gila Watershed and its communities of life. Through education, advocacy, and restoration projects, we are striving to build communities of stewards in more locally based economies. For over 25 years, we’ve been committed to the goal of harmonizing our presence with the natural world where we live. UGWA has three main focus areas: education, advocacy, and restoration. Our education programs include a youth climate advocacy and empowerment group called Thinking ON a Mountain (TOM), the Children’s Water Festival for fifth graders, and a 5-day eco-camp for high school students teaching about the Gila River’s native flora, wildlife, and hydrology, as well as the imperative to be responsible stewards of the natural world. We host a monthly community radio show called New Earth Kids, a radio show featuring kids who are taking action to make their world a better place to live. Our newest initiative, the New Earth Project, educates 4th and 5th graders on the importance of composting and soil health for food security in our community. Examples of our advocacy work include protecting the Gila River from an ecologically harmful diversion, a campaign we won in 2021; engaging with a coalition of faith-based groups, conservationists, businesses, and hunters and anglers to obtain Wild and Scenic River designation for the Gila River and major tributaries; and working on the Gila National Forest’s plan revision process, which is important because the forest plan guides all management decisions, policies, and projects for the next 15-20 years. Current restoration efforts include partnering with the Forest Service on a multi-year effort to eradicate salt cedar, an invasive tree, on the Gila River, a native tree planting campaign, and protecting sensitive habitats such as springs by fencing them from threats.