ALEXANDRIA, VA (August 19, 2008) – The Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation (RBFF) today announced that a new resource is available to state fish and wildlife agencies to leverage the Anglers’ Legacy™ program. The newly created State Anglers’ Legacy Pledge Drive Kit contains message guides and materials to host an Anglers’ Legacy Pledge drive, an opportunity to further build relationships with outdoor enthusiasts, as well as local businesses and clubs.
“We are proud that 30 state agencies are using our Take Me Fishing™ campaign in their direct mail efforts,” said RBFF President and CEO Frank Peterson, “and we also wanted to make it easier for our state partners to leverage the Anglers’ Legacy program. People truly open up when they take the Pledge and share their stories of what boating and fishing means to them. And these conversations build strong ties with anglers, old and new.”
Kit materials include:
Thirteen state agencies are already promoting the Anglers’ Legacy program through Pledge drives and other promotions to communicate with boaters and anglers. Iowa’s Department of Natural Resources for example, conducted a statewide club competition last year that encouraged experienced anglers to introduce new people to the sport.
“Decreased participation in fishing is just a symptom of our changing society. We are busier than ever and less connected to the natural world,” said IDNR Aquatic Education Coordinator Barb Gigar. “Anglers' Legacy calls attention to the problem and provides a very simple solution: people who know and love fishing invite others along. The framework and support materials also make it easy to ‘plug in’ to any angling education or promotion program.”
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources collected a significant number of Pledges this year and promoted Anglers’ Legacy at key events, including the Governor’s Opener in May and the Northwest Sportshow. Other state fish and wildlife agencies involved in promoting Anglers’ Legacy Pledge drives include Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Indiana, Kentucky, Oregon, South Carolina, Texas and Utah.
“We are thrilled that so many of our state partners have expressed interest in promoting Anglers’ Legacy and signing up new Ambassadors,” said RBFF Director of State Initiatives Stephanie Hussey. “I look forward to coming up with new and innovative ways to help state agencies leverage the program.”
Anglers’ Legacy is an RBFF program that rallies the country’s most avid anglers to take a Pledge to introduce newcomers to the sport. More than 60,000 Ambassadors have signed on to the program since its inception in May 2006. According to a 2007 survey of Anglers’ Legacy Ambassadors, most take more than four people a year fishing and also generate an initial $120 in fishing tackle and equipment sales, $166 in boating supplies and accessories and purchase 3.2 fishing licenses.
“This research means the program may have already generated $15 million for the boating and fishing industries and more than 105,000 new fishing licenses for states, supporting critical management and conservation efforts,” added Peterson. “We are building a rewards program to include newsletters, special prizes and other benefits to encourage Ambassadors to keep on sharing the sport.”
RBFF is a nonprofit organization established in 1998 to increase participation in recreational angling and boating. RBFF helps people discover, share and protect the legacy of boating and fishing through national outreach programs including the Take Me Fishing campaign and Anglers’ Legacy.