Cargill Inc. of Springdale has donated $45,000 to the nonprofit Illinois River Watershed Partnership (IRWP). The money will support education, restoration and conservation in the Illinois River Watershed of Northwest Arkansas, according to a news release.
“We greatly appreciate this significant grant support,” said Dr. Nicole Hardiman, executive director of the IRWP. “It is through this strong community support that we can improve the integrity of the Illinois River, a river that is important to all Northwest Arkansas and residents.”
IRWP Board President Tom Hopper said: “Cargill has long supported the mission of IRWP and has been a leader in the region’s efforts to protect and enhance the streams, rivers and lakes of Northwest Arkansas. This grant award continues that longstanding tradition, and we very much appreciate the support of the team at Cargill.”
Shane Costa, general manager of Cargill’s Springdale Complex, said the company is proud to support IRWP and is committed to giving back to the communities it serves.
“Our corporate purpose is to be the leader in nourishing the world in a safe, responsible and sustainable way,” Acosta said. “Partnering with IRWP aligns with our purpose and vision.”
The IRWP founded in 2005 by residents of the watershed and researchers from the University of Arkansas and Oklahoma State University. The group works to protect and improve the quality of the watershed, which flows through Northwest Arkansas and Oklahoma.
In 2016, IRWP, together with its sponsors, partner organizations and members, donated 34,563 hours of volunteer time by participating in community events and educational opportunities.