Waller Creek Conservancy: “An engaged community is the foundation of a sustainable Austin.”

Waller Creek Conservancy CEO Peter Mullan shares why they are excited to be a part of the Give 5 initiative and how the Conservancy is working to create a restored Waller Creek in downtown Austin.

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Why is your organization participating in 2016’s Give 5 campaign?

We are honored to be a part of the Give 5% to Mother Earth Day Campaign, bringing heightened awareness to eight incredible non-profits working to improve the environment and quality of life for all of Austin. At the Waller Creek Conservancy, we are focused on restoring nature, creating healthy places, and offering a uniquely Austin experience in our parks. The Give 5 initiative is engaging residents to actively participate in the revitalization of Waller Creek.

Why are initiatives like Give 5 so important to the Austin community?

Give 5 is an important effort and shows our community’s commitment to giving back to our community, and to environmentally-focused causes in Austin, in particular. An engaged community is the foundation of a sustainable Austin.

What are pressing challenges facing our natural environment in Central Texas? How do you think Give 5 and its partner orgs can play a role in addressing these challenges?

As Austin continues to grow, and become more urban, greenspace in our urban core becomes even more vital to its future. Give 5 creates awareness of the role that the natural environment plays in a healthy and active city. For example, Waller Creek has for decades faced major environmental challenges—from erosion to damaging floods, invasive species, and pollution. The Waller Creek Conservancy is working to address these historic environmental issues, and the funds raised through Give 5 will help the Waller Creek Conservancy revitalize Waller Creek into a new model for urban parks that will serve all Austinites.

Any additional thoughts you’d like to share?

Creating downtown parks is a great complement to the dense urban development that is occurring in our city. The future Waller Creek parks district will offer both access to nature and a platform for public programming that reflects Austin’s diversity and creative spirit, including music, food, and public art.  Nature and culture–together–that is what make Austin Austin, and Give 5 is helping Waller Creek Conservancy and others to create an engaged city that maintains its authentic character.

(Photo: David Brendan Hall)

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