The Friends of the Great Swamp
Friends of the Great Swamp is a community group comprised of concerned citizens, public agencies, and local businesses and organizations. Since 1990, it has been an active voice for protection of the functions, values and integrity of the Great Swamp. FrOGS is organized into three committees -- scenic and research, education and tourism, and steering -- all of which work together to collect and share information, promote education programs, encourage wise land-use decisions, and assist in watershed protection planning.
The mission of the organization is to undertake activities "to conserve, protect, and promote the functions, values and integrity of the Great Swamp wetland and its watersheds in Putnam and Dutchess Counties, New York". FrOGS' mission is pursued through:
The strength of FrOGS is the active, dedicated volunteers who organize and run the activities and events.
|scenes from the annual FrOGS-sponsored canoe trip on the Great Swamp|
FrOGS educational programs include programs for children and the very popular, annual canoe trips on the Great Swamp. These programs teach participants about nature and the importance of a clean environment, with an emphasis on the importance of the Great Swamp.
FrOGS works through building partnerships with other local and national organizations, both governmental and private, which pursue the same type of goals; we try to focus their activities on the Great Swamp. We are currently working with New York State DEC, NYS Office of Parks and Historic Preservation, Putnam and Dutchess Counties, Towns of Patterson, Pawling, and Dover, New York City DEP, US Fish and Wildlife Service, the Fish and Wildlife Foundation, Putnam County Land Trust, Oblong Land Conservancy, The Nature Conservancy, Open Space Institute, Purchase College - SUNY, Bedford Audubon Society, Audubon New York, Wildlife Conservation Society, Croton Watershed Clean Water Coalition, Trout Unlimited, the Highlands Coalition, Putnam Highlands Audubon Society, Pawling Fish and Game Association, and others.
In 2003 FrOGS and a coalition of Fourteen partners received a North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA) Grant to acquire lands and conservation easements in the widest and most vulnerable part of the Great Swamp-the "Heart". Working against time and skyrocketing land Prices, FrOGS, the Nature Conservancy, The State of New York DEC, The Town of Patterson and the Putnam County Land Trust have acquired 471 new acres and easements on additional 112 acres more. NAWCA partners are moving forward to work to preserve addition acreage.