Capacity Building

Healthy watersheds depend on healthy and strong organizations. Around our state, watershed associations are implementing quality programs and advocating for the protection and preservation of the environment. The difficulty is balancing the needs of a growing organization’s operational challenges against an ever growing “to do” list. 

Imagine trying to navigate a long stretch of a river without a boat. It is possible, but definitely not ideal. The same holds true for working to complete projects without strong administrative tools and resources. It is possible to accomplish your goals without them, but certainly not ideal. Capacity building is all about administrative tools and resources, which are the boat that keeps your organization afloat. They provide the strength to carry your group into the river and beyond. This Capacity Building section provides the organizational development tools and resources for New Jersey watershed communities to build and increase their effectiveness for long-term water protection.

This section is covers six common environmental capacity building topics: Administrative, EducationFundraising & GrantsGovernanceProgram Development, and VisibilityThe table below outlines the specific subtopics covered under each of the five headings and serves as a basic web map for this section.

AdministrativeEducationFundraisingGovernanceProgram DevelopmentVisibility
IncorporationStarting from ScratchAnnual AppealsBoard BinderTechnical Advisory CommitteesMarketing
InsuranceNew Jersey Watershed ExamplesGrant ManagementBudget AdministrationWork PlansPublic Participation
Legal AssistanceOnline Curriculum MaterialsBudget CreationNewsletters
Tax Exempt StatusEnvironmental Education SuppliesBylaws
Volunteer ManagementStrategic Planning
Document Retention

These pages will provide the beginning framework, but you should not stop here. In addition to these guidance pages, the Institute offers workshops throughout the New Jersey area to assist nonprofits, and is available for one-on-one assistance. If you would help with a capacity building issue from the Watershed Institute Coordinator, go to the Connect page or email