When I approached a table at the Washington Cask Beer Festival last year (delicious Washington beer sample in hand), the most I expected was to snag one of the eye-catching stickers. A blue ribbon of clean water poured over jagged green peaks and into a frothy mug of beer. “WA Wild Brewshed® Alliance,” the sticker proclaimed. I certainly did not expect to connect with an organization so engaging I’d volunteer to be on the other side of the table.
It turns out, the Brewshed® Alliance is an outreach initiative by WA Wild to bring people together around a common interest: clean water. Protecting our wilderness means preserving the integrity of our watersheds and the quality of the water that ultimately goes into our craft beers.
I was struck by the campaign’s simple but effective method for bringing conservationists, brewers, and beer drinkers together around a cause. I would learn that this ability to bring stakeholders together is a hallmark of WA Wild’s initiatives, and the root of their success.
WA Wild has helped protect nearly 3 million acres of Wilderness since its founding, by working with people on all sides: elected officials, recreation groups, the outdoor industry, hunters and anglers, businesses, and conservation organizations.
An effective environmental organization rallying and educating people with creative strategies? I was hooked. I began volunteering earlier this year and have had many gratifying interactions already!
At the 3rd Annual Brewshed® Beer Fest in June, I got to pour for Icicle Brewing Company, a founding partner of the Brewshed® Alliance. Icicle Brewing Company’s water source is Icicle Creek. This pristine water supply flows right through the Alpine Lakes Wilderness Additions that WA Wild helped pass in 2014. Icicle Creek is among the 40 miles of Wild & Scenic Rivers and 22,000 acres of Wilderness permanently protected by the Alpine Lakes Wilderness Additions!
I really enjoyed pouring Icicle Brewing Company’s delicious beer and talking with festival goers about the connection between the quality of the beer and the Wilderness Additions. Understanding the big picture processes that influence a pint just make it taste that much better!
I will #keepgiving my volunteer time to WA Wild because they are facilitating tangible Wilderness protection, and doing it in creative, educational ways that foster communication and cooperation among all kinds of people. Please join me in choosing Washington Wild as your #GivingTuesday organization!
I hope to see you on the other side of the table!
Written By Washington Wild Volunteer Kristina Blank.
Volunteers play a critical role supporting the work of Washington Wild and the Brewshed® Alliance. Interested in volunteer opportunities? Tell us how you want to get involved!
This #GivingTuesday stand up to protect wild places by supporting Washington Wild with a charitable donation. Your gift will help us reach our mini campaign goal of 100 supporters and $2,500!