CWH Executive Director, Wendy Ramallo spent an afternoon on the LA River with Mia Lehrer and Friends of the Los Angeles River. Here's what she had to say about it.
For starters, I traveled the LA River with an icon, a true Woman of Water, Mia Lehrer. It doesn't get much better than that. It is no surprise to me that women are leading the charge here in Los Angeles and across our State to improve our water health and the health of our communities. Great architects like Mia not only reimagine space, they connect us to our soul, our source of inspiration. It was a masters class...on the LA River.
I have always been a vocal advocate of nature as the most effective teacher and healer. Children learn best when they play outdoors, communities are safer and healthier when they can get outside and have access to parks. It is no different with water.
Out on the LA River you see first hand how mother nature can respond when given a chance, it is a powerful motivator to keep pushing forward. The River has the ability to connect people to water and equally important, to each other, in a way that cannot be replicated by any other means. Our investments in restoration, in expanding wetlands and open space will pay dividends. Nature-based work...works!
For the last 7 years, CWH has worked in partnership with LA City's Bureau of Sanitation Burbank's Department of Public Works, on the LA River Watershed Monitoring Program. We have closely monitored water quality and other important ecological impacts including aquatic life and habitats of the river. Long term data makes for good decision making. We will continue to use this research to help water agencies, policy makers and the community to think "upstream" and promote the health of our urban waterways.
Ready for my next trip. Paddles Up!