Public Involvement


The Adopt-A-Stream Program is looking for volunteer groups to walk, clean, and protect streams in Wilson.  The program allows groups to adopt stream segments to help promote healthy clean stream environments in the City.  


Watch a video about the Adopt-A-Stream Program on "Around Town"

 Groups should walk their stream reach at least twice a year, once in the spring and once in the fall, to identify water quality problems.  The groups should also conduct at least one stream clean-up each year along their designated stream reach.  Stream clean-ups involve the physical removal of trash and debris from the stream channel to a nearby designated location for collection and disposal by the City.  The City recommends groups to organize their clean-up to coincide with North Carolina’s “Big Sweep” in early October or Earth Day in late April and the City provides trash bags for the volunteer groups.  Signs are erected to recognize the efforts of groups that adopt at least one half mile of stream within the City's jurisdiction. 

When volunteer groups perform their stream walks and clean-ups, each group is asked to complete and submit a Field Data Sheet (word), (pdf) and notify the City of any pollution sources found.  The City will investigate reported pollution problems to ensure they are eliminated. 

The City is not responsible for injury to persons or property resulting from Adopt-A-Stream activities.  Once a segment of the stream reach has been adopted, it is the responsibility of the adopting group to obtain permission from all adjacent property owners for stream walks and clean-ups.  Educational door hangers describing the Adopt-A-Stream Program and its benefits to the environment are available from the City to notify property owners of the adopting group’s proposed activities.

By adopting a section of stream you are improving one of Wilson’s greatest natural resources – our creeks and streams. Every day litter enters our streams via storm drains and illegal dumping. 

With over 175 miles of streams, volunteers are needed to assist cleaning up this unsightly litter and report water pollution problems.  One of the best ways to find problems is to get into the stream and walk the channel.

To start the process read carefully through the information below.
Email Daryl Norris, Stormwater Environmental Specialist, to start looking for stream segments available to your group.  Once a segment is chosen, a contract will be emailed to you.  


Program Basics

·         Groups are required to sign up for a minimum 2 year commitment to the program.
·         Groups are required to complete a minimum of 1 clean-up a year.
·         Group size is best when kept at 15 or less volunteers.
·         Groups receive road sign after first clean-up and return of data sheet.
·         Groups must schedule clean-ups with the stormwater division and if needed, reserve supplies.
·         Groups are provided with vests, gloves, and trash bags.




Safety Information

Participation Waiver

Youth Participation Waiver

Field Data Sheet (word) (pdf)


Things To Note

  • April, May, September and October are the busiest months for clean-ups – schedule early if you want supplies!
  • Remember to watch the weather.  Streams rise rapidly and can quickly become unsafe.
  • Trash must be left at the road/sidewalk in order for it to be picked up and EXACT location must be noted on data sheet.
  • The name of the group on the contract will be what is put on the road sign.  No websites or phone numbers are allowed. 

For more information or to sign up, email Daryl Norris, Stormwater Environmental Specialist, or call 252-296-3305.


Participating Organizations:

Jones Elementary Science Club


Tang Soo Do Karate Center


Grupo Paradicma


Wilson Home School Envirothon Club


Educational Forest Volunteers


Rinker Materials, Inc.


Boy Scout Troop 8