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The Sportfishing Conservancy helps Latino youth celebrate culture during "Pesca on the Pier!"

by Tomtarga R 24 Jul 2018 13:09 UTC
Pesca on the Pier! © The Sportfishing Conservancy

The Sportfishing Conservancy (TSC) and the Hispanic Access Foundation (HAF) get kids outdoors for an on the water fishing and conservation experience.

This past Friday TSC helped provide some 50 of Los Angeles-area youth and family members with an up close and personal look at California's marine outdoors. Armed with rods and reels they were treated to a productive saltwater fishing experience on the Belmont Pier. The program "Pesca on the Pier!" was hosted by TSC, HAF and Amigos del Aire Libre as part of the 5th annual Latino Conservation Week. The multi-generational group was instructed in basic fishing techniques, conservation and safety, while participating in aquatic stewardship activities. And everyone caught fish!

"Getting kids outdoors and in touch with nature is critical today in this digital age. The best way to develop responsible stewards is through active, first-hand experience. We are proud to partner with the Hispanic Access Foundation and Vamos A Pescar taking kids out on this 'fish'n' expedition," said Tom Raftican, president of The Sportfishing Conservancy.

Latinos are California's largest ethnic population with almost 15 million people, yet only a fraction of California's nearly 1.8 million anglers are Latino. Events like "Pesca on the Pier!" look to provide a strong conservation initiative balanced with the cultural and economic needs of 21st century life. Additionally, the event not only help introduce the wonders of the natural environment, which for many is just minutes away, but it also teaches the youth how to respect and protect what they will come to enjoy so much.

"Pesca on the Pier" was a success thanks to The Sportfishing Conservancy, Hispanic Access Foundation and Vamos A Pescar partnership. We also owe a huge debt of gratitude to Captain Eddy Leland, Kerry Krueger, Ruben Ortiz and Bob Osborn. These folks know their fishing and generously volunteered their time and talent doing a stellar job mentoring the kids," Raftican added.

To further build upon this outdoors experience a follow-up, fresh water mentoring and fishing experience is planned for early Fall. Getting kids back out on the water should reinforce the conservation and outdoors experience garnered on the Belmont Pier.

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