Inland Fisheries Ireland launch online “Go Fishing” programme

Inland Fisheries Ireland Education and Outreach team are working with Foróige to get young people fishing with the “Go Fishing” programme. Due to public health related restrictions on gatherings the programme has now evolved into a blended learning experience that consists of one online course every week for four weeks and a local fishing trip for the fifth session to complete the programme. Since July IFI’s Education and Outreach team have piloted the programme with a number of Foróige groups nationwide.

On Thursday, 27th of August IFI brought a group of young people from a Foróige group based in Donegal for  an afternoon of shore fishing at Buncrana beach in Donegal as part of their fifth session field trip with the programme. Participants learned how to set up a beach casting rod, attach a rig using the improved clinch knot, how to bait up using mackerel, razorfish, lug worm and use bait elastic. The weather was perfect for fishing and the participants caught some nice sized dog fish. At the end of the session the participants were presented with “Go Fishing” goodie bags and certificates of awareness as part of completing the Foróige “Go Fishing” with IFI blended learning online course.

Lorraine O’Donnell, Education and Outreach Officer at Inland Fisheries Ireland said: “We are delighted to now be able to offer an online course as part of the “Go Fishing” initiative. Being able to offer the course in an online capacity keeps the programme accessible at the current time and also means we are able to offer the programme to organisations like Foróige. We would like to invite any youth groups that would be interested in taking part in the new online course to please email [email protected] for more information.”

Orla Taylor, Youth Worker at Foróige said: “Inland Fisheries presented their sessions in an engaging and well organised way, telling stories of catches and experiences they have had. This made it very real for the young people. The group loved the experience and are looking forward to trying more fishing.”

The four week online programme is designed for young people between the ages of 12-17 years old. Group numbers for the fishing trip are always in line with the current public health advice, however up to 20 people can partake in the online course. With consideration of the current situation all fishing field trips will take place in 2021. Participants will learn about Ireland’s inland fisheries and the benefits of angling, the biodiversity of our waterways, becoming a steward of our waterways and the environment and the basics of angling. Upon completion of the online programme the participants will be brought on a local fishing trip and will be awarded a certificate of awareness and receive a “Go Fishing” goodie bag.

For more information about the programme and if you wish to register a groups interest please email [email protected] and a local IFI Education and Outreach coordinator will be in contact.