Western Prairie RC&D projects address land conservation, water management, community development and land management. Below are our latest projects!
Land and Wildlife Projects
Wildlife Habitat Improvement Project
This program is administered via a MOA between Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks (KDWP) and the Western Prairie RC&D. Within this 26 county area, USDA approved activities were used to enhance upland game bird habitat on CRP, with emphasis on acres enrolled in WIHA and WHIP.
Republican River Riparian Restoration Partnership
Republican River Riparian Restoration Partnership (RRRRP) is a tri-state (Colorado, Nebraska, and Kansas) effort to plan across state lines for watershed protection and restoration. WPRCD council members Robert Martin, Diana Solko, Jack Benton, Sandy Rodgers, and Greg Nemechek have been involved in setting direction as to how the three states can address a common watershed and ration and protection strategies offered through Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) WRAPS program. Nebraska offers a community watershed program through Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality (NDEQ). The project will continue in setting a vision, mission, goals, and strategies.
Prairie Dog WRAPS Project
Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy (WRAPS) in the Prairie Dog Watershed Ended its first phase (development) this year with educational programs on WRAPS and organizing its leadership team that will take the process into the next phase (assessment).
Norton County Conservation District is the sponsor of this project and is part of the locally led process for watershed planning. WRAPS is a Kansas Department of Environment and Health funding source that originates from EPA dollars. Watersheds are selected that have primary water quality issues along with water quantity concerns.
Western Prairie RC&D is providing the facilitation assistance to help solicit local involvement during the planning and implementation process. Four WPRCD counties are part of this watershed. They are Decatur, Rawlins, Sheridan, and Thomas counties.
RC&D Partnerships Serving America's Communities
This is the third year that Rawlins County Economic Development along with the Rawlins County Schools have held the High Plains Youth Entrepreneur Fair. Schools from the area arrive at the schools to compete with their business ideas for various prizes. Judging is based on Completeness of Business Plan, Product Knowledge (Research & Development), Marketing Ideas, Product Feasibility, Commitment to Rural Economy/Lifestyle and Overall Impression of the Contestant/Product.
Northwest Kansas Regional Recycling Hub
The Northwest Kansas Regional Recycling began in the spring of 2002 with four counties has grown to a eight county region. The organization is managed by a board of directors made up of individuals appointed by the County Commissioners and cities of the member counties. Each member county has two directors and an alternate for the board.
A one-ton truck and a 36’ trailer are used to pick up materials from mem-ber counties with permanent locations for their recycling programs. The organization now have one coordina-tor and three facility employees (This does not include each county satellite personnel employed by each county.)
Cheyenne County RC&D Water Conservation Project
Sherman and Cheyenne County Extension, Cheyenne County Conservation District, City of St. Francis, and the City of Bird City were instrumental in providing informational workshops, water conservation special edition in the St. Francis Herald, and a two day “Conservation in the Landscape Lawn & Garden Tours”.
Rawlins County Home Town Competitiveness Annual Youth Entrepreneur Fair
Rawlins County Home Town Competiveness sponsors annually Youth Entrepreneur Fair for area schools. Competition on developing businesses and business planning are the keys to the fair.
Brewster Community Grocery Store
Non-Profits without a 501(c)(3) IRS designation find it hard to access grant from local and major foundations. Western Prairie RC&D Area, Inc. holds that IRS designation and is able to be a fiscal agent (flow through) for organizations to complete needed projects. A local foundation was able to award the grocery store with $7400 to purchase equipment to continue to operate.
Oberlin Senior Citizens and Youth Recreation Building Complex
Golden Age Center and the Oberlin Theater were housed in a building that was deteriorat-ing and the community saw a need to replace the structure with a building complex that will house both activities along with a bowling alley. With exceptional community effort the Golden Age Center and the theater will soon be completed. The bowling alley is the third phase of the complex. Western Prairie RC&D is presently researching possible funding sources for their third phase.
Wallace County Fair Grounds Livestock Barns
Wallace County has a growing fair each year that has grown out of the existing barns for their livestock. Western Prairie RC&D researched for funding possibilities and wrote one grant to a major corporation foundation. The grant was not ap-proved but the county commissioners stepped up and provided the funding along with local support. The barns are constructed for future fairs.
Logan County OWLS Project
OWLS Project: Outdoor Wildlife Learning Site in Oakley has come to a completion and continues to be maintained by the Logan County Conserva-tion District. It is an ongoing educational project for schools and learning center.