ALEXANDRIA, VA (February 28, 2018) – Today, the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation (RBFF) and the George H.W. Bush Vamos A PescarTM Education Fund announced the grantees for 2018, marking the third round of grants for the Education Fund. The grantees will work to bring fishing, boating and conservation experiences and education to Hispanic families in six states.
A total of almost $160,000 in funds will be provided for 15 fishing and boating programs in California, Florida, Iowa, Nebraska, Pennsylvania and Virginia, including nearly $78,000 in grant funds from RBFF’s George H.W. Bush Vamos A PescarTM Education Fund. The six state agencies are fully-matching the grant funds, effectively doubling the funds for the 2018 grantees.
“The future of fishing and boating depends on engaging younger, diverse audiences. We’re happy to provide such an amazing opportunity to help organizations in reaching the Hispanic market,” said RBFF President and CEO Frank Peterson. “And with state agencies matching the funds, the impact of each program is effectively doubled.”
Grants were awarded to six state agencies to sub grant to the following 15 local organizations:
California Department of Fish and Wildlife
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
Iowa Department of Natural Resources
Nebraska Game and Parks Commission
Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission
Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries
“Emerging audiences, like Millennials and Gen X-ers are increasingly diverse, and the Hispanic population is expected to reach 65 million individuals by 2020,” added Peterson. “With this in mind, it’s imperative that our industry reach out to and include the Hispanic audience in marketing messages, communications and imagery.”
In 2014, Bass Pro Shops Founder and CEO Johnny Morris donated $125,000 to RBFF to start an Education Fund in honor of his friend, President George H.W. Bush’s 90th birthday. Soon after the George H.W. Bush Vamos A Pescar™ Education Fund was launched, other companies have come on board with their financial support. The Education Fund carries out its mission of engaging Hispanic families across the United States in fishing and boating through hands-on experiences and conservation activities.
About the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation (RBFF)
RBFF is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to increase participation in recreational angling and boating, thereby protecting and restoring the nation's aquatic natural resources. RBFF's recently announced 60 in 60 effort strives to attract 60 million anglers to the sport by the end of 2021. To help recruit, retain and reactivate participants, RBFF developed the award-winning Take Me Fishing™ and Vamos A Pescar™ campaigns creating awareness about boating, fishing and conservation, and educating people about the benefits of participation. These campaigns help boaters and anglers of all ages and experience levels learn, plan and equip for a day on the water. The campaign websites, TakeMeFishing.org and VamosAPescar.org, feature how-to videos, information on how to get a fishing license and boat registration, and an interactive state-by-state map that allows visitors to find local boating and fishing spots.
About George H.W. Bush Vamos A Pescar™ Education Fund
The George H.W. Bush Vamos A Pescar™ Education Fund was created by RBFF with an initial donation of $125,000 from Bass Pro Shops Founder and CEO Johnny Morris to bring conservation, education and fishing and boating experiences to Hispanic families in key metro areas of Texas and Florida. With the help of similar donations from other individuals, companies and associations, the fund will help educate and engage Hispanic and multicultural audiences throughout the United States in boating and fishing with the support of RBFF’s Vamos A Pescar™ Hispanic outreach initiative.