Trout Unlimited Receives Award for Youth Education

Trout Unlimited received a prestigious award from the Jersey Coast Anglers recognizing their tremendous efforts in youth education.

In November, 2011, New Jersey Trout Unlimited (NJTU) received the prestigious “Youth Education Award” from Jersey Coast Anglers.  NJTU was nominated and chosen due to its continuous efforts with youth education with respect to cold water conservation.

Specifically, the programs recognized were;

– Trout In the Classroom (TIC):  This program was re-established about 6 years ago with the introduction of 2 tanks into a school in north New Jersey.  Today, our TIC program has 117 tanks in over 100 schools.  We estimate that this reaches over 10,000 students, teachers and faculty. Currently, we partner with NJ F&W as co-sponsors of the program.

Each one of our 10 chapters meets on “Egg Day” in October at the Pequest Trout Hatchery to receive the eggs for the schools within their regions. They deliver the eggs and insure they are properly placed in the awaiting tanks.  They then are “on-call” to assist with chiller tank maintenance, entomology programs and any other concerns the teacher or student may have.  In the springtime, our volunteers then assist when the fish are released into the wild.  Each teacher is responsible for ensuring the students complete the necessary release forms which are then approved by NJ F&W.

– Coldwater Conservation School (CCS):  Two years ago, NJTU started a Coldwater Conservation School and again partnered with NJ F&W to host 48 students in 4 days of cold water conservation education.  The students learn the importance of a healthy watershed through hands on workshops, stream entomology and bug & fish species identification. They also participate in fly casting and fly tying instruction.  Although the program was quite successful, we learned that a better selection process was in order to insure the “right” student was in attendance.  With this being said, we scaled back the program to 26 students in 2011 and are already underway planning 2012.

–  2012 Strategic Planning:  As we enter into 2012 and begin to develop our next 2 & 5 year strategic plan, we are looking to heavily emphasize on TU youth membership growth within the State.  Our National Organization has a great program called Trout Unlimited Stream Explorers which is geared toward youth membership.  This program provides the youth member with:
– Sixteen month TU calendar
– Official TU membership card
– Stream Explorers sticker
– Access to activities and games on http://www.streamexplorers.org

We will continue to focus on youth development / education.

NJTU is honored to receive such an award and looks forward to continued efforts with respect to youth education!

Pictured in the attached photo from left to right…
Tom Fote, Past JCAA Chair / Committee Member
Rick Axt, Past NJTU Council Chair
Richard Thomas, NJTU Council Chair
Greg Kucharewski, JCAA Youth Education