Covid really is a nasty little virus. Whilst we have, mostly, consigned the major impacts of the virus to the near history books, the pesky little thing persists.
Up until a month ago I honestly didn’t see what all the fuss was about. Then, after feeling decidedly “poorly” for a few days, I did the responsible thing and took a test. The ominous two red bands almost leapt into view and near quivered with their eagerness to tell me that I had finally succumbed to covid.
Now you may be thinking, how relevant is this?
Well, I am now (along with thousands – possibly, millions - of others) beginning to get some idea of the impact that this virus has had on society, on our school age children, and specifically the disruption and effects that have proven to be monumental.
But what has all this got to do with Fishing for Schools?
A good deal, actually. Having found ways of bringing our initiative into schools remotely, we are now beginning to see the huge impact that the tranquillity and absorption of the sport can make on students. Primarily, a natural realignment and gentleness whilst fishing in the great outdoors… and, we have said it before, learning so much in the process.
Fishing for Schools might not be a panacea but it’s a heck of a good antidote to some things.
Which brings me on to the quite phenomenal response to this year’s schools application intake – and here I must pay tribute to the regional Angling Trust development officers – notably, those in the South and especially in the Northeast and Yorkshire. These committed fishers and ambassadors have really carved niches for us in areas we knew Fishing for Schools had a role to play, but just didn’t seem to gain traction… Now we have.
I think that is very much the point; as soon as one can demonstrate Fishing for School’s worth, the programme is enthusiastically embraced by that school or area; it is just a case of getting known in unknown regions.
Naturally, this will lead to a dilemma; with only a finite number of places and a large volume of applicants, who do you allocate places to and who do you have to turn away?
It is a ghastly problem… This is where all of you can come in and help. With your support, we could do so much more and really make a telling difference to this post-covid generation of students.
I also want to give a huge shout out to Tesco. Their help in offering us a spot within their Stronger Starts token scheme at key locations in the Fishing for Schools landscape has been astonishing. I visited the Shepton Mallet store and was just thrilled to see our name beside other worthy causes.
If you happen to be in store, please do pop that token into our section. As they say… Every little bit helps. And it really does.
If you can help please, please do. You can also donate to Fishing for Schools online, here.