Your voice can make a difference for your watershed. People are more likely to listen to their friends, family, and neighbors than to anyone else. The messenger can be just as important as the message. People also change their behavior in response to social norms. In other words, people are more likely to take small actions for stormwater issues if they see the people around them taking these actions and if they hear that others support these actions.
Our guide will give you talking points about stormwater, simple actions you can promote, and ideas for starting conversations.
You Can Make a Difference: Talking about Stormwater Action (PDF download)
Seasonal Outreach Calendar
As you engage with neighbors and community members, point them toward the behaviors that will have the greatest positive impact given the seasonal conditions. This outreach calendar can help you determine which stormwater management practices are most important to address in each month of the year. Also see the Seasonal Social Media Posts below for text and images you can share every month or help you talk with your neighbors.
Seasonal Stormwater Outreach Calendar (PDF download)
Seasonal Social Media Posts
To help you encourage friends and neighbors to take action, we’ve created content you can share through social media, or in newsletters, emails, and any digital space where you feel comfortable. Under each month below, copy the caption text, click the image link and download it, and share! You can also download the Seasonal Social Media Posts guide for the whole year.
Seasonal Social Media Posts Guide (PDF download)
Copy December image caption:
Consider getting involved with the Friends of Lake Wingra! They have a vision for the health of our watershed, and you can make a difference. Sign up for the monthly newsletter to learn more about their goals and how you can help. https://www.lakewingra.org/ #protectourlakes
Copy January image caption:
Escape from the snow by taking some time to learn about rain gardens this winter! You can make one of your own by planting native plants that soak up the rain and help prevent flooding in our area. https://www.ripple-effects.com/rainGardens #soakuptherain
Copy February image caption:
You can make a difference for our lakes in your own backyard! Native plants help soak up the rain and prevent flooding in our area. Now is the time to plan how you can add those deep roots to your yard. https://dnr.wisconsin.gov/topic/endangeredresources/nativeplants.html #SoakUpTheRain
Copy March image caption:
Native plants make the best rain gardens, which are important sites where stormwater can soak into the soil. A garden of any size can make a big difference, so check out https://foamadison.org/ or https://www.ripple-effects.com/plantDane to pre-order native plants for pickup in May! The deadlines to order are usually in mid-March, so make sure to get yours in early. #SoakUpTheRain
Copy April image caption:
Help rain soak into the soil instead of rushing directly to the storm drains that empty into and pollute our local lakes! Redirect your roof downspouts so rain can run into your yard or garden instead of onto a paved surface. Flexible downspout extensions are available at many hardware stores, so don’t wait to make this quick fix! https://ripple-effects.com/ #SoakUpTheRain
Copy May image caption:
Once the risk of frost has passed, converting even a small corner of your yard to native plants can make a big difference for our lakes! Their deep roots help rain soak into the soil and protect against flooding. These resources will show you how to get started: https://www.ripple-effects.com/rainGardens. #SoakUpTheRain
Copy June image caption:
Not only do rain barrels help prevent flooding from excess stormwater, they also provide a free source of water for your garden! Learn more about purchasing and setting up your barrel here (styles and colors vary): https://ripple-effects.com/rainBarrels. #SoakUpTheRain
Copy July image caption:
Raising your mower blade height to at least 2.5 inches can help grow a full, dense lawn. This allows your yard to soak up the rain and helps prevent stormwater from carrying pollutants into our beautiful local lakes. More here: https://ripple-effects. com/yardAndGarden#lawn. #SoakUpTheRain
Copy August image caption:
If yard and garden fertilizers are improperly applied, excess nutrients can wash into our lakes and contribute to algae growth that gets in the way of summer fun. Learn about steps you can take to minimize your impact if you do choose to use it: https://ripple-effects.com/yardAndGarden. #ProtectOurLakes
Copy September image caption:
When fall leaves wash into our lakes, they contribute excess nutrients that can lead to unpleasant algae growth and harm wildlife the following summer. Make sure you’re ready to recycle your leaves right, whether it’s by mulching them on your lawn or setting them out for pickup. https://ripple-effects.com/Leaf-free-Streets #LeafFreeStreets
Remove leaves from the street gutter. Encourage neighbors to sign up for the Leaf-Free Streets alert program! Text alerts are sent in October and November, so make sure to share the October post early in the month.
Copy October image caption:
When leaves enter our lakes, they contribute excess nutrients that can lead to unpleasant algae growth and harm wildlife. Keep leaves off the streets to prevent this from happening! If you live in Dane County, you can sign up to receive alerts 1–2 days before large rain events. More here: https://ripple-effects.com/Leaf-free-Streets. #LeafFreeStreets
Copy November image caption:
What turns your garden green—nutrients—can also turn our lakes green! Keep nutrients out of our lakes and in your soil by composting any yard waste that hasn’t been collected. https://dnr.wisconsin.gov/topic/Recycling/compost.html #LeafFreeStreets