National Grants for Fishing and Boating Education in Schools
The Future Fisherman Foundation, the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation, the American Association for Leisure and Recreation, and the National Association for Sport and Physical Education have formed a unique partnership offering schools up to $5,000 in grants to help introduce children to two of America’s most popular outdoor pastimes.
Grants, training, and other services provided through this National Physical Education Grants Initiative allow teachers to launch new fishing and boating programs as early as the 2003-2004 school year. Grant money can be used for fishing and boating equipment, field trips, curriculum materials, and other resources.
"Fishing and boating are excellent forms of recreation and provide for lifelong family activities," said Mike Davis, Chief Executive Officer for the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance, in announcing the new grants program today at the annual conference. "This new collaborative relationship with the fishing and boating community exemplifies the value of working together to improve the school curriculum, provide activities that can contribute to the reduction of obesity, and strengthen families."
"Teachers are in a special position to bring these wonderful outdoor pursuits to America’s youth," said Anne Glick, Executive Director of the Future Fisherman Foundation, a non-profit organization that offers a variety of professional fishing and boating programs, equipment, and services to community groups and schools. "When children learn about fishing and the outdoors, you can really see the difference it makes when they start to discover a new sense of confidence and respect for themselves, their friends and family, and their communities."
Statistics show that fishing and boating are among the most popular sports in America. Research also reveals that time spent on the water connects families and friends. Most boat owners started boating at 12-14 years of age, and 90 percent of all adult anglers learned to fish before the age of 13. Through these grants, teachers can help students develop a lifelong love of fishing and boating and an appreciation for the outdoors.
Sponsoring organizations bring the added benefit of access to a nationwide network of outdoor educators, national conservation groups, and youth organizations that offer a variety of versatile fishing and boating education programs that can be tailored for teachers’ specific interests and needs. In addition, the partnership provides for training, access to discounted equipment, and ongoing guidance. A training workshop for those awarded funding provides expert guidance on:
Angling and boating skills, safety, and ethics, Basic equipment set-up and maintenance, Fish and their habitat needs, How to take part in community conservation efforts, Developing partnerships for access to fishing and boating sites, and Making community connections to recruit long-term mentors for children.
Grant applications are available from any of the organizations listed above or by visiting www.futurefisherman.org. Applications must be postmarked by June 2, 2003. All applicants will be notified in early July 2003 with the status of their grants, and a training workshop will be held in August 2003. To ensure continued success of school programs, grant award winners will be put in touch with state fish and wildlife agencies and community groups with successful youth fishing programs.
The Future Fisherman Foundation provides information about dozens of available fishing programs and resources, including discount and loaner equipment programs on its website. The Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation provides information on where to fish and boat, how to get started, how to obtain a fishing license, and local fishing and boating regulations on www.WaterWorksWonders.org.
The National Physical Education Grants Initiative was an outgrowth of discussions held during an Aquatic Education Leadership Summit in 2002. Hosted by the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation, 50 leaders from across the United States convened to build an agenda for the advancement of aquatic education. Dr. Joel Meier, a past president of the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance as well as the American Association for Leisure and Recreation and chairman of that association’s Council on Outdoor Adventure/Education/ Recreation, represented the outdoor education community at the summit. Posted by: Staff at rt23.com
Website: The Future Fisherman Foundation
April 02, 2003
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