About the
Coastal Watershed Council

About CWC

The Coastal Watershed Council is a dynamic and growing non-profit based in Santa Cruz, CA, working to transform the lower San Lorenzo River into a community destination by inspiring people to explore, enhance and protect this critical natural resource. When people care for the river, learn about its significance and build a connection to nature, it benefits the river ecosystem and the community we serve. This movement will succeed when people, just like you, recognize their role and take action. Check out CWC’s Theory of Change to learn more.


The mission of the Coastal Watershed Council is to preserve and protect coastal watersheds through community stewardship, education and monitoring.

History & Accomplishments

The Coastal Watershed Council (CWC), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, was formed in 1995 in response to the declining health of watersheds connected to the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. CWC’s mission is to preserve and protect coastal watersheds through stewardship, education and monitoring. Over the past 20+ years, CWC has educated thousands of students and trained thousands of volunteers to protect the natural resources along California’s Central Coast. CWC’s technical experts follow state and federal protocols to generate scientifically valid data that inform key decision-makers. CWC’s history has positioned us as well-respected experts in watershed protection and river restoration. Today, we are using this expertise to revitalize the San Lorenzo River.

CWC co-founded San Lorenzo River Alliance in 2013, uniting partners from government, local businesses, nonprofits and community groups. Using three main strategies including water quality and habitat improvements, community engagement and positive media attention, we worked to change how people view and interact with the river.

Today, CWC continues to provide every individual, club and organization an opportunity to get involved. There’s a role for everyone – including you. Learn how you can join the movement today.

CWC’s federal tax ID is 68-0368798.