Project Rain Barrel
Reduce your water footprint with an upcycled rain barrel
Did you know the average American family directly consumes nearly 110,000 gallons of water each year? If you include water used for producing food, energy, and consumer goods, that total jumps to 1.9 million gallons annually! Fortunately, there are plenty of simple cost-effective ways to reduce your water footprint and help recharge our rivers, lakes, and aquifers.
Installing a rain barrel is one of the easiest ways to reduce your water footprint. You’ll save money on water bills by collecting free rainwater to water gardens, trees, and lawns. This helps reduce demand for energy-intensive treated tap water, limits stormwater runoff and erosion, and saves water for use during droughts. The average homeowner can save up to 1,300 gallons of water every year with a single 55-gallon rain barrel!
River Network’s Project Rain Barrel helps communities and homeowners across the US and Canada reduce their water footprints by providing FREE materials, support, and promotion for hosting public rain barrel making workshops. We’ve partnered with the Coca-Cola Foundation, Coca-Cola bottlers, and our member groups since 2011 to connect more than 150 communities across the US and Canada with over 10,000 upcycled rain barrels. Watch the introductory video to learn more.
Find a rain barrel workshop near you
Visit our Events & Trainings page to find a rain barrel workshop near you. Each workshop is hosted by a local River Network member organization; please contact them directly for details about specific workshops. Most workshops occur in March, April, and May so check back often for updates and be sure to follow the Project Rain Barrel Facebook page for the latest news. Sorry, we cannot accommodate individual requests for rain barrels.
Don’t see a workshop near you? No problem! Check out our map: Who’s Protecting Your Water? and search for a water conservation organization near you. Reach out to them directly and let them know that River Network can connect them with free materials to host public rain barrel making workshops. Better yet, volunteer to help coordinate the workshop!
Host a workshop
Free and paid River Network member organizations are eligible to host workshops and receive free materials while supplies last. Review our Project Rain Barrel Workshop Planning Guide (disponible en espanol) for details including current deadlines and application requirements.
Have you recently completed a Project Rain Barrel workshop? Please submit your post-event report here.
More water conservation resources
Rain barrels are only one way to reduce your water footprint. Check out these resources for more water conservation ideas:
- Estimate your household’s water footprint using the Water Footprint Calculator
- Pledge to conserve water with Change the Course
- Check out these Residential Water Efficiency Tips and WaterSense for ways to save water at home
- Watch Where is Water from the UN World Water Assessment Programme
- Explore more simple tips for saving water