An initiative to build community-based leadership that will help define a Milwaukee water
future grounded in stewardship, equity, and community-wide involvement. 


One of our flagship programs, engages community members in a year-long commitment to the watersheds of Lake Michigan and the Milwaukee River Basin. We explore how water moves through our communities and how our individual actions impact the health of our waters.  Each year, the program collaborates with neighborhood leaders (ages 16 through adult) from five partner sites. We take part in a process that includes water education, cross-community relationship building, art-making and team project development.

The five Water School teams (each comprised of 5 team members) then receive a mini-grant to develop and implement a neighborhood-based water stewardship project that brings new knowledge home to others in their communities and addresses a particular water challenge to promote community health, equity, economic development and justice.  

By partnering directly with neighborhood organizations, we cultivate water leadership throughout the city and help cement the value of water stewardship in all our participants and the work they do. We assist each individual project site by providing education, support and financial resources so emerging water leaders can work toward positive solutions to locally identified problems. 

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Cross Lutheran Church

Escuela Vieau

Gerald L. Ignace Indian Health Center

Golda Meir School

Hepatha Lutheran Church

Nearby Nature- Milwaukee

Repentance Outreach Ministries

Running Rebels

TRUE Skool

Vecinos Unidos

Victory Garden Initiative

Wisconsin Green Muslims


Cross Lutheran Church

Doerfler Elementary School

Running Rebels

Groundwork Milwaukee

Friends of Lakeshore State Park

Center of Veterans Issues

Golda Meier School


Escuela Verde

Gerald Ignace Indian Health Center

Wisconsin Green Muslims

Alice's Garden

Lake Park Lutheran

Core El Centro

All People's Church

TRUE Skool

Urban Underground

The Islamic Society

Amani United

Word of Faith Ministries

Victory Gardens Initiative

Young People's Resistance Committee

Contact us for details on how your organization, school or neighborhood group can participate in the next water school!

Email our Water City Program Coordinator, Rhonda Nordstrom, at

rnordstrom(at)milwaukeewatercommons.org or call (414)763-6199.


This program is supported in part by a grant from the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin and the National Endowment for the Arts.