Friends of the Cheat began as a group of citizens and recreational users seeking support and action to address the devastating acid mine drainage pollution problem. The group held meetings around a kitchen table, organized litter pickups, and kept donations in a jar.
Today, the organization has an average annual operating budget of over $1 million, and a full-time staff of six working on a variety of restoration, recreation, and outreach projects.
A large portion of the organization’s work is technical and draws from a wide range of disciplines from the natural sciences to construction. In contrast, all of FOC’s work involves people and active community engagement.