Program Overview

Program Overview

INRMW’s primary goal is to improve the current and future lives of people in Georgia by utilizing and managing natural resources more sustainably, including water, soil, vegetation, and the ecosystem that encompass them. This will be accomplished by:

  • Objective 1: Reduce threats to natural resource sustainability in targeted watersheds by introducing innovative approaches and practical models of participatory integrated natural resources management.
  • Objective 2: Empower local communities and authorities by promoting local governance mechanisms that enable rural people to advocate for change that better their lives.
  • Objective 3: Achieve tangible results in behavior change of women and men that visibly illustrate the linkages between ecosystem services and human benefits.
  • Objective 4: Increase capacity for integrated and adaptive natural resources management at community, municipal, regional, and national levels by developing knowledge and skills and by improving management tools within key institutions.
  • Objective 5: Catalyze more widespread implementation of integrated natural resource management by raising public awareness and supporting the development of more enabling policy and institutional frameworks.

The program’s goal and immediate objectives are to be achieved by implementing a number of sequential activities, which  include: a) baseline assessments of existing laws, policies, institutions and practices in the area of natural resource management, as well as in other related sectors, such as potable water supply and sanitation, energy, agriculture, health protection and disaster management, among others; b) rapid assessments of existing socio-economic and environmental situation in targeted river basins; c) selection of four representative upstream and downstream pilot watersheds/areas for on-the-ground interventions; d) detailed assessments of four selected pilot watersheds/areas; e) development of integrated natural resources management plans in a watershed context within the selected pilot watersheds/areas; f) implementation of a number of priority interventions at the household/community/watershed level through small grants program to demonstrate the benefits of sustainable and integrated natural resources management; g) provision of technical assistance to the Government of Georgia.

INRMW program pilot activities, including development of integrated natural resource management plans and implementation of the small grants program are carried out in four representative watersheds/areas of Alazani-Iori and Rioni river basins. These are:

  1. Upper Alazani Pilot Watershed Area: Akhema & Telavi municipalities;
  2. Upper Rioni Pilot Watershed Area: Oni & Ambrolauri municipalities;
  3. Lower Alazani-Iori Pilot Watershed Area: Dedoplistksaro municipality;
  4. Lower Rioni Pilot Watershed Area: Senaki and Khobi (Rioni section) municipalities.

Overall program budget is $6.5 million and duration – 4.3 years (October 2010-December 2014). It is implemented by GLOWS Consortium, lead by Florida International University in a partnership with CARE International, Winrock International, UNESCO-IHE and CENN.

 INRMW-Georgia Flyer – Georgian and English Versions


Program Accomplishments

Program Accomplishments


  • National and River Basin Environmental Baseline Assessments conducted;
  • Four pilot watershed areas of Alazani-Iori and Rioni River Basins selected.
Related Documents


Detailed Assessments 
  • Programmatic Environmental Assessment (PEA) conducted;
  • Detailed watershed assessments conducted, including natural resources assessments, energy analysis, and disaster and climate vulnerability and risk studies for four pilot watershed areas as well as water safety assessments for six pilot cities (Oni, Ambroluari, Akhmeta, Telavi, Senaki and Dedoplistskaro);
  • A report on Ecosystems’ Economic Valuation for Rioni River Basin prepared;
  • Water Safety Assesssment for  centralized rural water supply systems launched.
Related Documents
Local Authorities’ and Communities’ Engagement and Empowerment
  • 60 target communities located in pilot watershed areas selected for engagement in integrated watershed management;
  • Capacity development of target communities and local authorities initiated, with:
    • Community Incentive Groups (CIGs) established in all 60 target communities
    • 37 Community-Based Organizations (CBOs) legally registered, with 10 CBOs registered in years 1&2, 20 CBOs  registed in year 3 and, 7 CBOs registered in year 4
    • 146 representatives of 37 CBOs trained in small grants management and environmental compliance 
    • 345 representatives of CIGs/CBOs of 60 target communities and local authorities of 7 pilot municipalities trained in local self-governance, long-term community development and action planning, resource mobilization and, organizational and project management in years 2 &3
    • 128  representatives of CIGs/CBOs of 60 target communities and local authorities of 7 pilot municipalities trained in watershed management, renewable energies, protected areas management, disaster risk reduction and climate change in years 2 &3
    • 120 representatives of local governments of 7 pilot municipalities trained in climate adaptation and DRR strategic planning and budgeting in year 3
    • 41 representatives of local governments of 7 municipalities trained in operations of energy passport software
    • About 45 representatives of target communities of Alazani-Iori and Rioni pilot watershed areas trained in DRR and climate adaptation.
Related Documents
 Youth Education via Ecoclubs
  • 38 schools selected for ecoclubs establishment and development, with 21 ecoclubs established in years 1 & 2 and, 17 ecoclubs established in year 3;
  • Ecoclubs Alliance established as an informal network of ecoclubs kids, teachers and parents, counting about 895 members at present;
  • “Ecoclubs Boom” Facebook page created in year 1, counting over 1280 friends at present;
  • Feasibility study for optimum institutional and financial model of Ecoclubs’ Alliance developed and discussed with key stakeholders, followed by the development of a charter for the Alliance;
  • 38 ecoawards granted to ecoclubs in support of their on-the-ground activities, with 15 ecoawards granted in years 1 & 2, 10 awards granted in year 3 and 13 ecoawards granted in year 4;
  • 69 trainings conducted for ecoclubs member and non-member students and teachers in organizational and project management, acquiring leadership and trainers’ skills, watershed planning and management, climate change and disaster vulnerability and risk assessment, climate adaptation, biodiversity monitoring, wetlands ecology, protected areas management, energy efficiency and renewable energies, with 9 trainings conducted in years 1 & 2 , 12 trainings conducted in year 3 and 48 trainings conducted in year 4. In total, over 800 ecoclubs members  benefited out of these trainings;
  • 115 teachers of 60 public schools of four pilot watershed areas trained in disaster and climate vulnerability and risk assessments in year 3;
  • 11 ecocamps, 3 cognitive-entertaining excursions/tours and  3 field expeditions of IRNWM ecoclubs organized, with:
    •  4 ecocamps  in Lagodekhi, Mtirala, Tusheti and Kazbegi Protected Areas, 1 ecocamp in a resort Shovi, upper Rioni pilot watershed area, 1 ecocamp at Tsemi resort and  5 ecocamps at CENN Bulachauri Ecoeducation Center organized in years 1,2,3 and 4
    • 1 education excursion  in Hypermarket Goodwill  and 2 Science Picnic tours in Vake Park organized in years 1,2&3
    • 2 biodiversity monitoring field expeditions to Kolkheti and Vashlovani national parks  and 1 field water-quality biomonitoring expedition to local lake Io, village Kariata organized in years 3&4.
Related Documents, Information Sources


  • Over 30 consultations held with local and national stakeholders to develop watershed management plans;
  • Watershed management plans, including integrated natural resources management, DRR and climate change adaptation and mitigation and, urban water safety plans developed, discussed and agreed upon with key stakeholders;
  • Watershed management plans reviewed and endorsed local councils of municipal authorities;
  • DRR and CCA&M Action Plans for 7 pilot communities developed;
  • Integrated Waterhsed Management Guidelines developed in Georgian and English;
  • 2 donor conferences in support of watershed management plans for 4 pilot watershed areas of Alazani-Iori and Rioni river basins organized;
  • First round of consultations with watershed councils, composed of members of target CBOs and local authorities held to discuss monitoring and implementation issues of watershed plans as well as feasible institutional model for watershed management.
Related Documents


  • Small grants management guidelines developed and shared with local stakeholders;
  • 21 small grants’ projects completed, including 6 water supply improvement projects, 2 village-scale irrigation scheme rehabilitation projects, 1 farm-scale drip irrigation project,  5   agriculture drainage improvement projects4 disaster risk reduction (flood&flash flood protection) projects and 3 renewable energy projects. These resulted in:
    •  intermittent supply  of safer drinking water to over 3,516 residents of villages Saketsia, Khimshi,  Sheubani, Tsedisi, Kistauri and Shenako 
    • protection of the lives, property and farm lands of 4,415 residents of villages Ruispiri, Sakobiano, Mirzaani, Glola, Chaladidi, Akhalsopheli, Nokalakevi, Patara Poti and Potskho from flashfloods and floods
    • improvement of agriculture drainage and land productivity for 2,642 residents of  villages  Chaladidi, Akhalsopheli, Nokalakevi, Patara Poti
    •  improvement of irrigation water supply for 8,717 residents of villages Zemo and Kvemo Alvani to irrigate 2,400 ha farm land instead of 1,500 ha, irrigated before INRMW intervention
    • efficient irrigation, through drip irrigation , of 150-square meter household plots of 150 families (820 residents) in village Phirosmani
    • provision of 150 watt solar power to each of the 9 households of Shiraki settlmenet, benefiting 40 residents in total
    • provision of hot water through solar water heating system  to Ambroluari town sports’ club, directly benefiting 120 club members, saving 1,850 kWh energy and respectively, about 158 US$ utilility costs annually
    • improvement of energy efficiency in a Shovi resort hotel to save 583,315 kWh and respectively,  US$10,140 utility costs annually
  • 8 new small grants’ projects initiated, including 3 water supply system rehabilitation projects1 flood protection (gabion) project,  2 agricultural drainage projects and 2 renewable energy&energy efficiency projects. These will result in:
    • intermittent supply  of  safer drinking water to  6,321 residents of villages Matani, Laliskuri and Menji
    • protection of 2,473 residents of villages Jokolo, Sagvichio and Shavgele from floods and flash floods
    • improvement of agriculture drainage and land productivity for 1413 residents of villages Sagvichio and Shavgele
    • improvement of energy efficiency in 2 kindergartens of village Zemo Kedi and Oni town to benefit 193 persons and, to save  92,323 kWh energy and about US$ 2,976 utility costs annually
  • 8 new small grants’ projects initiated to address such issues as improved access to irrigation water, sustainable land and forest management, biofarming and, wildlife tracking and ecoeducation in protected areas.
Related Documents


Public Awarenss & Advocacy
  • Water Week organized during the week of 22 March, 2012 in support of Global Water Forum to advocate for and promote water-related issues in Georgia, through carrying out youth water forum, slogan and poster competition on water, public debates on water and climate, river bank clean-up action and TV and radio discussions on INRMW program and its efforts to address major water issues in pilot watershed of Alazani-Iori and Rioni basins;
  • The South Caucasus Conference on Sustainability and Watershed Management organized on 3-4 June, 2013 in Tbilisi aimed  to  bring together a broad spectrum of stakeholders from three South Caucasus countries to discuss  the  sustainability of integrated watershed management approaches, including best practices, limitations and challenges, and lessons learned from experiences in the field.
  • Batumi beach clean-up action and field expedition to test the quality of one of the water courses of the Black Sea organized on 19 September, 2013 on the occasion of the International Coastal Clean-up Day (21 September). INRMW program team, USAID, 45 kids from the ecoclubs of Lower Rioni pilot watershed area and Ajara region, local authorities and scientists participated in the event;
  • World Water Day marked by INRMW ecoclubs members from lower Rioni pilot watershed areas on 22 March, 2014 through lake bank cleaning and biomonitoring field expedition actions;
  • Earth Day celebrated by upper Alazani and lower Alazani-Iori ecoclubs members on 22 April 2014, through ecoclubs students attending a lecture on the importance of nature protection and, participating in topical discussions and greening actions;
  • INMRW program lessons learned and success stories presented at USAID Fresh and Marine Waters Capstone Event held in June 2014 at USAID HQs, Washington DC.
Technical Assistance to the Government of Georgia
  • Basic WHO Water Safety Planning training conducted for 25 representatives of the United Water Supply Company and rural water supply companies of Georgia by UNESCO-IHE representatives;
  • Training of 25 representatives of regional and local laboratories of service centers of the United Water Supply Company of Georgia conducted by UNESCO-IHE representatives in drinking water quality testing and quality assurance and control;
  • Training of 16 representatives of the United Water Supply Company of Georgia conducted by UNESCO-IHE in water transporation and distribution;
  • Training of local authorities of 61 municipalities in watershed management, water safety and DRR was organized on 25-26 December 2013 by joint efforts of USAID/NALAC project: “Institutionalization of Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation in Georgia Regions”, USAID/GLOWS INRMW-Georgia program and CENN. During the training INRMW program experience and success stories in application of participatory watershed planning and management approaches were shared with the target audience that triggered high interest among workshop participants and their willingness to replicate similar approaches, tools and methods in other watersheds;
  • Technical assistance (TA) to the Government of Georgina on Environmental Flow Assessment (EFA) initiated, with 1 basic EFA awareness training conducted for key national-wide stakeholders, draft EFA methodology developed by an experts’ team of UNESCO-IHE and pilot EFA launched for the Supsa River;
  • TA on improvement of water accounting system for the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources Protection of Georgia (MoENRP) initiated by FIU;
  • TA on capacity development of the MoENRP in cost-benefit analysis completed resulted in a training of 6-8-person group of the Ministry composed of the technical staff from various departments and services in CBA theory and its practical application;
  • TA on the improvement of Lagodekhi Protected Areas pasture management initiated;
  • TA on the development of several chapters of the State of the Environment Report and law enforcement training of the protected areas rangers by the Education Center of the MoENRP launched.

INRMW Year 1 Progress

INRMW Year 2 Progress



Florida International University,

As Miami’s first and only public research university, offering bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral� degrees, FIU is worlds ahead in its service to the academic and local community. Designated as a top-tier research institution, FIU emphasizes research as a major component in the university’s mission. The Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine�and the� School of Computing and Information Sciences‘ Discovery Lab ,�are just two of many colleges, schools, and centers that actively enhance the university’s ability to set new standards through the research initiatives.

In 1965, Florida Senator Robert M. Haverfield introduced Senate Bill 711, which instructed the state Board of Education and the Board of Regents (BOR) to begin planning for the development of a state university in Miami. An abandoned airfield is an unusual place for the birth of a university. But in the summer of 1969, founding FIU� president�Chuck Perry gathered three leaders who would help him create his vision. Butler Waugh, Donald McDowell and Nick Sileo joined the 31-year-old Perry at Tamiami Airport and set up shop in the former air traffic controllers’ tower. President Perry decided that the control tower should never be destroyed and so it remains standing today at the center of campus, as FIU’s Ivory Tower. From that single building on that abandoned airfield, FIU has grown to be one of the largest universities in the country.

FIU’s role in USAID/GLOWS INRMW-Georgia program is overall program coordination, detailed natural resources assessments and development of integrated natural resources management plans for pilot watershed areas, technical assistance to the Government of Georgia and public outreach.

UNESCO Institute of Water Education (UNESCO –IHE),

The UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education was established in 2003. It carries out research, education and capacity development activities in water related fields. UNESCO-IHE continues the work that began in 1957 when IHE first offered a postgraduate diploma course in hydraulic engineering to practicing professionals from developing countries. The Institute is the largest water education facility in the world, and the only institution in the UN system authorized to confer accredited MSc degrees, and provides PhD education in collaboration with partner universities. The UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education is based in and operates from Delft, the Netherlands, and facilitates all UNESCO member states.

UNESCO-IHE’s role in USAID/GLOWS INRMW-Georgia program is advise in water safety planning and technical assistance.

CARE International in the� Caucasus,,

CARE is a leading relief and development non-governmental organization fighting global poverty.�It worked in 84 countries, supporting 1,051 poverty-fighting projects to reach more than 122 million people in�2011.�CARE helps tackle underlying causes of poverty so that people can become self-sufficient. CARE is often one of the first to deliver emergency aid to survivors of natural disasters and war and, once the immediate crisis is over,�it helps people rebuild their lives. While CARE is a large international organisation with more than 11,000 employees worldwide, it has a strong local presence: 97% of�Care’s staff are nationals of the countries where Care’s programmes are run.

Care Internatinal’s role in USAID/GLOWS INRMW-Georgia program is community engagement and empowerement, implementation of integrated watershed management plans through small� grants’ program and youth environmental awareness rising and education.

Winrock International �(WI),,

Winrock International is a nonprofit organization that works with people in the United States and around the world to empower the disadvantaged, increase economic opportunity, and sustain natural resources. The organization was created in 1985 with the merger of three institutions: the International Agricultural Development Service, the Winrock International Livestock Research and Training Center, and the Agricultural Development Council (A/D/C). Winrock matches innovative approaches in agriculture, natural resources management, clean energy, and leadership development with the unique needs of its partners.�By linking local individuals and communities with new ideas and technology, Winrock is increasing long-term productivity, equity, and responsible resource management to benefit the poor and disadvantaged of the world.

Winrock International’s role in USAID/GLOWS INRMW-Georgia program is energy analysis and development of energy passports for pilot watershe areas.

Caucasus Environmental NGO Network (CENN),

CENN – Caucasus Environmental NGO Network – is a non-governmental, regional organization established in 1998 and specialized in the fields of civil society development and institutional strengthening, environmental research and policy, resources management, compliance management and communication and environment. Since its establishment, CENN has worked at the local, national and regional levels in the Caucasus region. CENN believes in networking and cooperation in the context of environmental issues.�The NGO�has already a serious record of joint activities and projects implemented regionally, where all three South Caucasus countries – Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia – participated equally to find the solutions to local and regional environmental problems. With 5 offices throughout the South Caucasus region and 30 full time staff members, CENN has the capability, experience and commitment to providing a service that is consistent, professional and of the highest quality. CENN has around 10 years experience in delivering modern solutions for public and business sectors as well as communities, assisting them in managing their environmental and related risks and helping them to achieve competitive advantage through improved environmental and social performance.

CENN’s role in USAID/GLOWS INRMW-Georgia program is assessment of climate change and disaster vulnerability and risks and development of DRR and climate change mitigation and adaptation plans; youth environmental awareness rising and education.

Contact Information

Contact Information

Representative Office of Florida International University in Georgia – ROFIU-GE

(+995 32) 2 157-156 (office)