Celebrating volunteers – the lifeblood of the WA recfishing community

This week (18 – 24 May) is National Volunteer Week and we’d like to take this opportunity to say a huge thank you to the unsung heroes across the State who contribute to recfishing and our mission to make great fishing experiences for all in the WA community, forever.

Keen recfishers put their hand up to do our part and clean up our waterways

With this year’s theme ‘Changing communities, changing lives’, here is just some of the amazing work volunteers do:

This is not to mention the thousands of hours volunteers tirelessly put in to keep local fishing clubs running and beating at the heart of local communities.

Volunteers like Luke can help spark a lifelong passion for safe and sustainable fishing.

It takes a genuine community spirit to give time freely for volunteering and a belief in the positive difference fishing can make in people’s lives, but volunteers get something back in return. Recfishwest Fishing Clinic instructor Luke Doherty, Fishing Clinic Instructor says, “It gives me a chance to connect with people and hopefully have a positive impact on their lives, even if it’s as simple as being a friendly face that says ‘hello’.”

Exmouth Reef Vision volunteer Lindsay Shaw says, ” It’s more than a way of giving back – I’m able to test my skills and abilities, and challenge myself on the water, meet new people and share some of the great fishing King reef and Exmouth has to offer.”

Lindsay plays an important role in sharing catches, and underwater footage with Exmouth locals and the wider recfishing community.

Recfishwest Fishing Clinic instructor Kim Burton adds, “Volunteering is about sharing my knowledge and experience as well as passing on some of the finer skills to children. I get as much pleasure seeing children at our clinics catch quality fish as I do catching fish myself. I’ve been a volunteer for years and its been an absolute honour.”

Kim and Alan have been volunteering as fishing clinic instructors for more than 20 years and enjoy providing children opportunities they wouldn’t normally have.

Many of our events and programs would simply not be able to operate without vollies like Luke, Lindsay and Kim, allowing us to continue delivering on our commitment to protect, promote and create sustainable, accessible, enjoyable and safe fishing for the benefit of the WA community.

On behalf of our Board, our members and staff THANK YOU to all our volunteers and to all of those in the wider recfishing community for making such a positive contribution.

Interested in volunteering for Recfishwest?

We are currently looking for volunteers for our Exmouth Reef Vision program! If you live within a close proximity to Exmouth’s King Reef and have a boat, click here to find out more and get in touch with us.

Alternatively you can join our volunteer database and we will get in touch next time we have an event we need help with!  More info here.

THANK YOU to all our volunteers and to all of those in the wider recfishing community for making such a positive contribution.

 

 

Reeling in a Bright Future For Fishing Clubs

Fishing clubs have been a staple of our great pastime for many years, as they provide an opportunity for hands-on learning amongst a social setting full of like-minded individuals.

Fishing Clubs remain an integral part of their local communities and the landscape of the WA fishing scene.

The traditional model of a fishing club has lost some of its appeal to up-and-coming fishers. The days of sharing fishing stories at the monthly club meeting have been replaced with the instant gratification of sharing stories on social media.

Due to the change in the way many of us share our fishing knowledge, some clubs have struggled to adapt to changes and now find themselves unable to attract fresh faces or ideas to their organisations. Being innovative and making fishing club’s attractive to the next generation is a vital part of continuing to deliver the numerous benefits that clubs provide to the members and their local community.

Pictured above is Russell Hanley from the Australian Trout Foundation and Matthew Gillett from Recfishwest.

We’re pleased to report that there is a great number of fishing clubs in WA that are as strong as ever. These clubs have continued to innovate and provide members with opportunities to socialise and go fishing in a way that aligns with current social norms and values.

As a part of our commitment to improve fishing in Western Australia, recently Recfishwest ran our inaugural Fishing Clubs Conference, aimed at building and developing fishing clubs across WA. The two-day conference provided information on current fisheries management and research approaches in WA, along with an update on Recfishwest projects.

The conference had a focus on assisting clubs to improve their services and discussions on ways to improve shore, boat and freshwater fishing.

From left to right: John Curtis from Australian Anglers Association, Craig Wells from WellStrategic and Malcolm Cruickshank from WA Anglers attended the conference over the two days.

Representatives from a number of fishing clubs from both the metropolitan and regional areas attended the conference, eager to learn new approaches and also share their experience and expertise with other fishing clubs from around the state.

Recfishwest took many learnings away from the two days and from the feedback received, the clubs took plenty away from the presentations and subsequent discussions.

This is the first time Recfishwest has held a forum like this, and we plan to hold similar events in the coming years to further understand and assist with the issues faced by fishing clubs around the state.

Thanks to the following clubs for attending the conference:

  • Australian Anglers Association
  • Australian Trout Foundation
  • Broome North Fishing Club
  • Esperance Deep Sea Angling Club
  • Exmouth Game Fishing Club
  • King Bay Game Fishing Club
  • Lancelin Angling and Aquatic Club
  • Mangles Bay Fishing Club
  • Nickol Bay Sportfishing Club
  • Perth Game Fishing Club
  • WA Trout and Freshwater Fishing Association
  • WA Anglers
  • WA Undersea Club

Recfishwest will continue to work closely with clubs to ensure they remain an integral part of their local communities and the landscape of the WA fishing scene.

Having seen first-hand some of the great work of many successful fishing clubs in WA, we are now more certain than ever that the future of fishing clubs is strong.

Pictured above is Scott Medling from Nickol Bay Sportfishing Club with Ben Knaggs & Dave Thomson from the Exmouth Game Fishing Club.