RAFT Volunteer & Training Program


RAFT volunteers are citizen scientists trained to conduct water quality sampling following a specific protocol. With some time and dedication, anyone 18 years of age and older with moderate physical fitness can become a RAFT volunteer. Before becoming a RAFT volunteer, you must first complete the online RAFT training program (see Training below). This will provide an important foundation for understanding what’s involved in water sampling as well as the science behind the various measurements you will take in the field.

Because the RAFT program is designed to meet more rigorous sampling standards than other volunteer programs (such as Hoosier Riverwatch), the training requires a notable amount of time to complete, 2-3 hours. RAFT training is set up in ten short (20-30 min) modules with a short quiz at the end of each module. If you are already a certified Hoosier Riverwatch volunteer, RAFT training will be very intuitive for you (but is still required).

As a RAFT volunteer, you do not need to participate every month – you can choose the event(s) that is most convenient to you. You will need to register in advance for each month since we’re limited on the number of people that can participate in each event. Everyone will start at a common location, where teams will be determined, and return to that same common location at the end to return their samples and data.

We ask that you please register to become a volunteer so we can reach out to you about completing the training and sampling events.

Register to Volunteer

If you have additional questions about the RAFT program, email us at raft@thewhiteriveralliance.org and a White River Alliance staff member will contact you with more information about the program.


RAFT online training is a free training set up in ten short modules that should take approximately 10-30 minutes each to complete. The modules include a training video, supplemental materials, and short quizzes. Quizzes are designed to help reinforce important elements from the module that will help you collect reliable samples in the field during a RAFT event. You do not need to complete all ten modules of the training in the same session. You can save your quizzes as you go and then return at another time to complete the remaining modules. You will, however, need to complete all ten modules within 30 days or start over. Successful completion of all ten RAFT training modules is required prior to participating in a RAFT sampling event.

To begin the training, you must first create a login in order to access the training modules. Your login will track your progress, so you may come and go as you please and complete individual modules as you have time. RAFT training will remain available online year-round. Successful completion of all ten RAFT training modules is required prior to participating in a RAFT sampling event.

After clicking the button below to create register for the training, select River Assessment Field Team (RAFT) Training Program from the dropdown menu.

Create Training Login

Already created a login, but need to complete the training? Access the Training Modules by clicking the button below.

Access Training Modules

River Assessment Field Team (RAFT)