Creating Clean Water Connections!

Throughout the Twin Cities metropolitan area and beyond, Minnesota Water Stewards are connecting with neighbors to protect and improve the health of our water. Trained and certified through the Minnesota Water Stewards program, these local leaders spark curiosity and engage their communities in projects that make measurable impacts on water health. Applications are being accepted now for the next group of Minnesota Water Stewards eager to make a difference for water.

The Minnesota Water Stewards (MWS) certification was developed by Freshwater to provide those interested in protecting and improving water health in their communities with the knowledge, skills, and relationship with local governments they need.  Stewards work through in-depth coursework that includes water science, land/water/climate interaction, behavior change, and best practices in water efficiency and protection. A culminating capstone project unites the curriculum with action that benefits the health of  local waters. Stewards gain experience and confidence to serve as a source of knowledge and influence in their communities.

Past projects include a rain barrel basics webinar complete with a barrel give-away, a coloring book intended as a field guide for self-led explorations of a creek, and a fierce, but friendly Adopt-A-Drain contest between neighborhoods.

Each Minnesota Water Steward brings a unique perspective and passion to this work. Whether volunteering with watershed districts and environmental groups, participating on city and local government boards, influencing policy, educating kids and the community, or installing projects, Stewards are at work protecting and improving the health of our waters.


Minnesota Water Stewards volunteer 50 hours of community service in their initial year of certification, at least 25 hours each subsequent year, and attend eight hours of continuing education to maintain their certification. To date, Stewards have accomplished a tremendous amount through their service. They have:

  • Connected with thousands of people through outreach and educational events.
  • Installed or planned more than 200 projects, including rain gardens, rain barrels and cisterns, permeable pavers, pollinator gardens, tree plantings, neighborhood outreach events and buckthorn removals.
  • Prevented millions of gallons of polluted runoff – algae-causing organic material, animal waste, gas and oil spillage, excess salt, and other debris – from entering our lakes, rivers, and creeks each year.

To learn more, visit and register for an online information session.

Links will be sent following registration.

Information sessions dates and times:

  • October 12, 12-1 p.m. and 5-6 p.m.
  • October 26, 12-1 p.m.
  • November 9, 5-6 p.m.
  • November 16, 12-1 p.m.

About Freshwater

Freshwater is a nonprofit organization dedicated to inspiring and empowering people to value and conserve our freshwater resources. and