The Young People’s Angling Project, hopes to introduce young people to the delights of fishing and along the way develop social skills and environmental awareness.


Saturday 22 July sees the start of this innovative project to help youngsters gain confidence and self-esteem with the aim of reducing the risk of them becoming involved in crime or anti-social behaviour.


The Young People’s Angling Project is a partnership between the Gipping Valley Angling Club, the Youth Inclusion Support Panel, the Environment Agency, Eastern Angling, Anglia Care Trust and the Children’s Fund.


Ten youngsters between the ages of eight and 14 will be given the opportunity to learn from qualified fishing coaches how to bait a hook, cast a line and land their fish.  It will also give them the skills and confidence to enable them to establish and sustain their own club.


The Gipping Valley Angling Club obtained funding worth £7,000 from Suffolk ACRE through the Local Network Fund (Department of Education and Skills).  Further grants of £500 each came from the Environment Agency and Suffolk County Council. 


This money will enable the club, together with the Youth Offending Service of Suffolk County Council, to provide the youngsters with 20 weeks of fishing coaching by local experts.


Ian Wood, Honorary President of the Gipping Valley Angling Club said: ‘We are pleased to support this project and would be keen to support similar schemes in the future’.


Ian Bliss, Environment Agency funding officer, said: ‘We are really pleased to be involved in a project that helps young disadvantaged people learn about angling and at the same time increases their awareness of the wider environment.


‘We hope that the project will be a huge success and that it can be replicated in other areas.’


The money enables the club to pay for the qualified coaches, transport costs and all the equipment needed for fishing including rods, keep nets and bait.


This pilot project will be based at the Gipping Valley Angling Club’s Barking Tye Lakes, where there is also a small classroom for workshops. Some of the money will go towards a generator to supply power and a PowerPoint projector and screen to be used there.