Letter to the Reader
December 9, 2019
Welcome to WREN’s Website! Help us Celebrate our Twentieth Year of making a difference.
As you visit our website, we hope that you will gain insight into our important work, increase your appreciation for the role that wetlands play in the community of Eugene, and become more aware of our program offerings for learners of all ages. We love to share local areas of interest–especially our West Eugene Wetlands—during our Wetland Wanders, Family Exploration Days, and Field Trips. We also hope you will see how your ideas, resources and energy can help us make a difference.
In twenty years, we have gained a greater understanding of the stories these landscapes tell. Our story begins well before Europeans arrived, when these lands were the home for Native Americans for many thousands of years. By looking at our past, we begin to appreciate the significant role these landscapes have in our future and the richness they add to our community. Our goal is to share this story with you and other members of our community by offering free or highly subsidized, community-centric programs, by acting as a spokes-person for wetland education, by acting as liaison among community partners, and by offering a space for interns and students to learn and apply the skills gained through their education.
Part of WREN’s mission involves sharing the science of the wetlands and fostering an understanding of the diversity of habitats and the geological history that make up our natural landscape. We value an “ecosystems” perspective in seeing the bigger picture for how the plants, the animals, the land, and the people all fit together into an elegant, intertwined fabric and play an important role in maintaining the ‘ecosystem service values’ of wetlands. These values include improving water quality in streams, in recharging ground water, and in filtering out heavy metals and other contaminants in order to maintain a healthy watershed. Each one of us and the decisions we make is an important part of the warp and woof of this fabric.
From the micro-wetlands in our city to the many thousands of acres of restored wetlands in Lane County, we value the role that wetlands play in a healthy urban environment. We have learned to see these spaces as integral parts of our community–not nature apart and separate.
So welcome, enjoy, and we look forward to working together to make a difference in our community!
WREN’s Board of Directors