A variety of exciting community based training programmes is being rolled out for local groups across the three catchment areas.
Local community groups indicated they would benefit from training in standardised water assessment and survey techniques, to produce baseline evidence and to target action plans for the improvements of rivers and water bodies in their local area.
The planned programme of training includes:
- Water & Flood Awareness Safety Training – To introduce individuals to water safety and allow them to operate safely and competently within or near a water environment.
- Non-Native Invasive Plant Identification and Control Options training – To provide candidates with the opportunity to be hands-on with common terrestrial and aquatic invasive species across Ireland.
- Habitat / Invertebrate Scoring Training Course – To train those interested in small streams / small rivers on how best to monitor and characterise these water bodies.
- Fisheries Habitat Assessment – To help participants identify catchment pressures and allow them to use these skills to undertake essential ‘health’ assessments on rivers and lakes in their catchment.
Citizen scientists and local involvement are essential to a water quality directive and empowering people with these skills will provide a lasting legacy to the CatchmentCARE programme. Participants will therefore gain the knowledge and skills to make informed assessments of their catchment water bodies, thus increasing their engagement and investment in the local area. They will also be able to go back to their own groups and train more individuals on the techniques learnt, thus maximising the reach of the training programme throughout the catchments.