The house that love built

RBC Wealth Management is proud to support the Ronald McDonald House Charities – Upper Midwest. Their mission is to provide a comfortable and caring home-away-from home that allows families to stay together and reduce stress during a child’s serious illness.

One of the ways to help these families in their time in need is to provide a home-cooked meal. Cooks for Kids volunteers plan, prepare and serve buffet style meals every night as well as brunch on Saturdays and Sundays.

In July we had a group of volunteers from the Minnetonka office come together to provide dinner and their support for the families staying at the Ronald McDonald House on Oak Street. What we would consider to be a small gesture makes an enormous difference in the lives and families of children who are facing serious illnesses. Bringing smiles to their little faces and providing relief to their parents for even a short time makes what we do worthwhile.
Top from left
: Paul King, Financial Advisor; Hal Tearse, Branch Director; Jeff Belstler, Registered Client Associate; Heidi Johnson, Minneapolis Associate Complex Manager.   Bottom from left: Michelle Gribben; Joe Gribben, Financial Advisor; Tony Ricker, Financial Advisor; Ronald Mcdonald; Ronda Zattera, Branch Service Manager; Jennie Zajicek, Senior Investment Associate
Not pictured: Jackie Larson, Financial Advisor

Helping protect wildlife habitat in Montana

Clean water is essential for all aspects of our lives and the RBC Blue Water program focused on this idea for the past ten years with a $50 million commitment. In 2016, Montana Trout Unlimited received a community action grant from the RBC Blue Water Project to clean up and reconstruct a side channel on Rattlesnake Creek in Missoula, Montana. Our own financial advisor, Hal Tearse, supported the grant request and matched the grant nearly 2-1. During a recent trip to Missoula to inspect the completed project, Hal was pleased to find that the project was very successful.

Rattlesnake Creek flows for 26 miles, beginning in the Rattlesnake Wilderness north of Missoula, Montana. A dam, retrofitted with a fish ladder in 2004, bifurcates the Creek at mile 4.5. Although the first 21.5 miles of Rattlesnake Creek flow through either the Rattlesnake Wilderness or a recreation area within the Lolo National Forest, the final 4.5 miles flow through the City of Missoula and under two interstate highway overpasses, the Burlington Northern Railroad, and near several smaller local roads before entering the Clark Fork River. This final stretch receives pressure from agricultural demands as well as urban uses and environs. Within the final five miles, six irrigation ditches divert water from Rattlesnake Creek, buildings and development confine and channelize the creek and the urban landscape deposits trash, debris and toxins in the Creek and riparian habitat.

Water rights in the western states are very contentious and often in conflict. In this case, water from Rattlesnake Creek is channeled to a variety of rights holders to irrigate land along the creek. But water wasn't the only thing being diverted; young fish were also ending up in lawns and fields along this stretch of the river. The reconstruction project consisted of: repairing the stream banks; planting native species; cleaning the river bed from debris; and installing diversion gates with screens that allow water for irrigation while preventing fish from being pulled into the water flow.

Thanks to Hal and the RBC Blue Water project, Montana Trout Unlimited was able to successfully reconstruct and protect the wildlife habitat along Rattlesnake Creek.