The Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation (RBFF) announced Thursday that Bass Pro Shops is continuing its support of the George H.W. Bush Vamos A Pescar Education Fund with a $50,000 donation. This donation will help to increase awareness of, and participation in, fishing, boating and conservation activities through grassroots educational programs and on-the-water activities held in high-density Hispanic communities.
"It's great to see continued support of this critical fund by our industry counterparts," said RBFF President and CEO Frank Peterson. "For several years now, RBFF has done its part in engaging more diverse audiences in fishing and boating, aiming to make the sports more inclusive.It's promising to see Bass Pro Shops continue its support for the Fund and its mission to bring more Hispanic individuals and families to the water."
RBFF's 2016 Special Report on Fishing shows gains in Hispanic fishing and boating participation; however, this audience is still underrepresented overall. Out of 46 million total anglers, only 3.4 million, or 7 percent, are Hispanic. In contrast, Hispanics currently make up 17 percent of the U.S. population (54 million) and are projected to grow to 20 percent of the U.S. population by 2020 (according to the U.S. Census Bureau), making this a critical audience to engage for the future viability of fishing and boating.
"We are pleased to continue our support of the George H.W. Bush Vamos a Pescar Education Fund to help more Hispanic families discover the joy of fishing and boating," said noted conservationist and Bass Pro Shops founder/CEO Johnny Morris. "Bass Pro Shops is an industry leader dedicated to helping families of all backgrounds connect to nature and each other through fun outdoor recreation activities. We are proud to partner with our friend President Bush and the RBFF community in support this initiative."
The George H.W. Bush Vamos A Pescar Education Fund was initiated with a $125,000 donation 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. With the help of continued support from Bass Pro Shops and donations from other individuals, companies and associations, the fund supports local programs to engage the entire family in fishing and boating, and focuses on multiple engagements rather than one-day events to foster long-term participation in the sport. Earlier this year, the first grant recipients of the George H.W. Bush Vamos A Pescar Education Fund were announced at an event held at the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum in College Station, Texas and featured the former president. RBFF is currently soliciting grant proposals for 2017 that will further the reach and mission of the Fund.
More information about the George H.W. Bush Vamos A Pescar Education Fund, including how you can contribute to ensure the ongoing success of the Fund, is available at TakeMeFishing.org/educationfund. More information about Vamos A Pescar and all of RBFF's programs and products is available at TakeMeFishing.org/corporate.