RainWise Contractor Academy: A FREE Comprehensive Training

Program starts September 1, 2020 from 6-8pm and runs for 12 weeks.

SPU is offering 48-hours of free training to help you become an independent contractor for Seattle’s RainWise Program. RainWise contractors run their own businesses installing rain gardens and cisterns on private property in the City of Seattle. Selected applicants will receive 48-hours of intensive training over 12 weeks. Classes will be held remotely by computer on two evenings per week starting in September. Class size is limited to 20 prospective contractors.

Apply by July 31st at 5:00 p.m.: http://bit.ly/RainWiseAcademy

Selected applicants will be contacted for a phone interview in early August. People of color, women and veterans are strongly encouraged to apply. For more information, please contact Bob Spencer: bob.spencer@seattle.gov or 206-684-4163

For more information about the RainWise Academy: RainWise Academy Flyer

Be RainWise!

With every storm, rain carries pollutants off our roofs, driveways and other hard surfaces to local creeks, Lake Washington and Puget Sound. During big storms, the sheer volume of this “stormwater” can cause sewer overflows, and erode hillsides and stream banks. RainWise rain gardens and cisterns can help control this runoff with your help.

RainWise is a rebate program that helps eligible property owners manage stormwater by installing rain gardens and/or cisterns on private property. This prevents flooding, adds attractive landscaping, and can provide water for summer irrigation.

The rebates may cover most or all of the cost of installing cisterns and rain gardens on your property. To receive a rebate, you must live in an eligible combined sewer overflow (CSO) basin.

Read the 2020 GSI Overview and Accomplishment Report

Check My Eligibility

You could be eligible for a RainWise rebate to install a rain garden or cistern!

What is a rain garden?

A rain garden is a shallow depression containing spongy soil and a variety of plants that thrive in northwest sun, soil and moisture conditions. It collects water from your roof downspout and allows it to safely soak into the ground. Rain gardens can be designed to fit your property.

What is a cistern?


A cistern is a large above-ground container used to collect roof water. It is like a huge rain barrel and can hold 200 or more gallons. During the winter, cisterns store rain to reduce the amount of water entering the sewer system. In the summer, this water can be used for watering. Cisterns come in several sizes and shapes to fit in a variety of situations.

Sightline Institue – Using Cistern Water for Edibles

The RainWise program is supported by four outreach teams that work across the city.

Connect with RainWise!


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Contact the Garden Hotline

Email Us

Check My Eligibility

You could be eligible for a RainWise rebate to install a rain garden or cistern!