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Moving the Great Lakes One Water Partnership to Sustainability

Year Awarded: 2020
Awarded: $487,000
Team Leader:  Public Sector Consultants, Inc.

This project will build on the progress made by the Great Lakes One Water (GLOW) partnership, a first-of-its-kind effort to bring the region’s shoreline community foundations together to develop solutions around water. The GLOW partnership will build transformational leadership on water issues and will expand the ability of the region’s shoreline communities to address aging water, stormwater, and wastewater systems as well as the water quality and human health challenges posed by these systems. The GLOW partnership encompasses 27 lakeshore community foundations working together in six regional teams (Upper Great Lakes, Lake Erie, Lake Huron, Lake Ontario, Lower Lake Michigan, and Upper Lake Michigan) to address the water infrastructure issues in their respective communities.

This project’s focus will be on building the local capacity within the GLOW partnership to ensure its success and long-term sustainability and includes up to $210,000 for grants to the regional teams to maintain the continuity of the water-focused action agendas they have built. This project will develop tools to help the GLOW partnership communicate with the public, local decision-makers, and elected officials, and expand the ability of its members to raise funds locally and regionally to support their activities.

Ultimately, a strong and vibrant GLOW partnership will bring together community foundations and their local leaders, inject financial and intellectual capital, drive technology innovations, and create a shared, basin-wide communications strategy for the Great Lakes that will build the public will for support and advancement of new solutions. This network of strong regional partnerships will be a model for other regions, who are ready to collaborate and take action on water issues across their communities.