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The Saco Watershed Collaborative: Safeguarding the Future of the Saco River

Our Mission

Source water protection (protecting bodies of water where drinking water comes from) is a priority of the Saco Watershed Collaborative. The Saco River provides drinking water for thousands of residents across southern Maine and New Hampshire. Forests, shoreland buffers, wetlands, aquifers, small streams, lakes and ponds, and rivers are all part of a system that collects, filters, and stores water. The Collaborative is a dedicated group of professionals, community members, and scientists working to protect the irreplaceable water resources and benefits that come from the Saco Watershed.


  • Protect water quality, public health and the ecosystems of the Saco Watershed
  • Develop and sustain mutually beneficial partnerships
  • Ensure long-term viability and sustainability of the Collaborative
A group tour hosted by Highland Farms in Maine. Members of the Collaborative learned about soil erosion control and nutrient cycling.


The Saco Watershed Collaborative hosted a workshop Testing the Waters for Collaborative Partnerships to Sustain the Saco on December 2, 2016. The purpose of this workshop was to explore the idea of forming a Saco Watershed Collaborative by bringing together members of the diverse groups who care about the Saco and its future. The goal of forming a Saco Watershed Collaborative was to increase the collective impact of a Stewardship Network by working strategically on shared goals. Participants in the workshop had an opportunity to learn from each other and provide input into the development and design of a Saco Watershed Collaborative. The University of New England used the results of this workshop to collaborate with interested groups throughout the watershed to carry the ideas of this meeting forward into the 2017 inaugural year of the Saco Watershed Collaborative.

Useful Resources

Project Management

  • Program Manager, Dr. Christine Feurt,
  • Program Manager, Dr. Pam Morgan,
  • Project Manager, Robyn Saunders,
  • Outreach Coordinator, Emily Greene,

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