#ANGLING - The Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) annual Sponsorship Scheme for 2013 is now open for applications.
Prizes may be sponsored under the scheme, but must be fishing tackle or angling-related in order to support those providing a service to Ireland's estimated 500,000 anglers.
The scheme is open to federations, clubs, individuals, youth groups, commercial salmon sector, etc who in the past have gained sponsorship for competitions, angling lessons, heritage projects and international, national and local events, all of which promote some or all of the following: inland fisheries, recreational angling and conservation.
Minister Fergus O'Dowd welcomed the scheme, saying: “Angling, and Ireland’s wonderful fisheries are there for all to enjoy. IFI, by supporting such activity is empowering individuals and organisations to boost their local economies, teach all ages and abilities to fish, have a hobby for life, and helping protect and sustain our fisheries resource into the future.”
Full details of the scheme are available on the IFI website and the closing date for receipt of applications is 15 January 2013.
Meanwhile, Minister O'Dowd has also announced the opening of the 2012-13 Salmon Conservation Fund Contributors Scheme, which has an initial allocation of €200,000 available for projects which help in the conservation of wild Atlantic salmon.
Applications are invited from clubs, fishery owners, individuals and commercial salmon fishermen who have contributed to the fund by 15 March 2013.
According to IFI, the scheme - which was run on a pilot basis for the previous two years - has been a success to date, with projects from all over Ireland awarded funding.
Applicants work with IFI to agree projects and many have been successful in securing additional LEADER funding.
The minister commented: “I never cease to be impressed by the work enthusiastic, passionate anglers and individuals can get done, ensuring that our natural resource is conserved and protected for future generations.
"The long term effect will ensure biodiversity and improved stocks of salmon from which Ireland can derive economic benefit through recreational angling, and commercial exploitation in years to come.”
Details of the scheme can be downloaded from the IFI website HERE.