Youth Conservation Corps

The AWWA Youth Conservation Corps (YCC) implements erosion control projects on streams, rivers, lakes and ponds in our target region. Each project showcases solutions to environmental problems faced by waterfront properties that landowners can do themselves. These solutions are called Best Management Practices (BMPs). AWWA’s technical director or program manager creates a site specific design with BMPs to solve erosion problems and the YCC crew installs the recommendations. The labor of crew is funded by donations and grants, and the landowner provides all the necessary materials. Behind these projects is a crew of eager high school students supervised by a crew leader and a technical director. The YCC program gives its youth corps the opportunity to effect environmental solutions and empowers them to become the future stewards of our water resources.

Rain Garden - Before


Rain Garden - After








The YCC began in 2005 with two demonstration projects done with the assistance of the Mousam Lake YCC and UNH Cooperative Extension. For the 2006-2007 seasons AWWA received funding for the YCC from the NHDES Watershed Assistance program, the Towns of Wakefield and Acton, lake associations, individuals, local businesses and private foundations to run a full season of YCC.

In 2008-2009, the AWWA YCC was funded by the NH Charitable Foundation, the Jane B. Cook 1983 Trust, the Alden N Young Trust and the NH State Conservation Committee.

Infiltration Walkway - Before


Infiltration Walkway - After








In 2010 three local businesses – AppleCore Docks, Great East Docks, and Raise-A-Dock generously supported the YCC who proudly wore the business names on their T-shirts. For the 2010-2011 seasons the YCC was again partially funded by a NHDES Watershed Assistance grant with the remainder of the funding from AWWA’s wide range of supporters.

At the close of the 2010 YCC season the completed 82 demonstration projects, including 266 BMPs, have resulted in a load reduction of over 100 tons of sediment and 90 lbs of phosphorus to the lakes each year. In addition, AWWA has responded to an additional 162 requests for technical assistance






AWWA YCC demonstration sites are chosen based on the following criteria:

1. Sites will be chosen from all requests for participation.
2. They must of an appropriate size and difficulty for the YCC, which uses hand tools only.
3. Sites will be selected that have a relatively high impact to water quality, using sediment load estimates where possible.
4. Each Erosion Control project represents an example of a Best Management Practice (BMP). Therefore, efforts will be made to choose sites whose solutions will provide examples of a wide variety of different BMPs.
5. Efforts should be made to include at least one project on each lake in the service area.
6. All other factors being equal, the projects should be visible and accessible to the public for inspection, to more fully raise awareness of erosion from storm water runoff and encourage other property owners to participate in the solutions.


Please take a look at our season reports for some examples of the work the YCC has done to prevent pollution from entering the lakes and streams of the AWWA region.

Are you concerned about how your property might be affecting the water quality?

Click on the link to fill out the Request for Assistance form and mail it to the address on the form. Or feel free to contact Program Manager Amy Arsenault for more information at 603-473-2500 or

Click here to download the AWWA YCC Brochure.


Funding for this project was provided in part by a grant from the NH Department of Environmental Services with funding from the US Environmental Protection Agency under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act.

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