This week, Rado Papiewski shares a much needed update on the valuable work he and his team do in educating the migrant anglers and integrating them smoothly into the local angling population!
I don’t think I could choose a better time for writing this long awaited update regarding the activities of our Building Bridges Team. The fact that we have been quiet doesn’t mean that we haven’t been doing much. It works the opposite – quite often we have so much to do that we don’t find time to write about it! This time I can’t wait any longer! I want to shout loud and clear as I owe it to my team, volunteers and anyone else who worked with us in order to get us to this point.
Recently we went through organization and delivery of our flagship fishing event – The Canal & River Trust International Lure Challenge. This event plays important role within our integration plan and this year attendance exceeded all expectation.
Patrycja took on the role of event organizer and managed to put together fantastic competition with 175 anglers signing in to it. Five different nationalities were represented during this friendly fishing challenge and the trophy was won by the English Team!
We have seen some fantastic individual results with Steven Collet winning the first place – with combined length of his catches exceeding ten meters, shortly followed by Jakub Potrykus of the Polish team with overall length over eight meters! We received some great feedback from the day which gave us some inspiration for running other events shortly. There will be one held in Runcorn on the 4th of November, and one in Peterborough on the 3rd of December – so feel invited!
Click on the Building Bridges logo below to see more details about further event!
In between events and other activities we continue to explain cultural differences to local anglers so they can see why problems might happen in first place, and how difficult it might be to deal with them. We also talk to migrants and present them with a fascinating concept of sports fishing and respect of rules, regulations and tradition of any country they live in. Many anglers might think that talking is a political job but I can argue this point. The best argument should be positive feedback from anglers who listen to our presentations during Fisheries Enforcement Workshops or club meetings. A lot of attendees say, that we provide an eye opener, that we draw a picture from different perspective, a picture which have never been shown to them and a picture which is different than the one presented on many social media pages where migrant anglers subject is raised.
With new school year started couple a months’ ago, we are starting to deliver our educational fishing programs designed for pupils from migrants’ Saturday’s schools in the UK. We are still waiting for a decision on getting some extra funding which we are trying to secure from Heritage Lottery Founding under Nenescape Partnership . We work with some schools already. This new generation of anglers are benefiting significantly from the fact that someone presents them with responsible fishing practices which they will be able to adopt when they go out and fish with friends and parents.
I am also very pleased to see continuous increase in number of migrant anglers who become club or Voluntary Bailiffs under Angling Trust VBS programme. More and more often clubs can see benefits from engaging with responsible migrant anglers and passing some responsibilities to them. In some cases knowledge of local migrant community behaviours and language skills resulted with some good quality intelligence reported back to authorities.
And finally we are getting ready for our ‘Sign Up for Close Season’ campaign where we are offering free multilingual signage to angling clubs around the country. It is important to understand that signs are not compulsory but they work in clubs’ favour in two ways – offenders can’t use lack of knowledge excuse and by making evidence much stronger when it ever comes to prosecution! Do not wait and order your signs now by contacting any member of our team here!