First Cast is TU's new nationwide initiative to introduce youth to coldwater conservation through angling. The program is the result of a ground-breaking partnership between TU and the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation (RBFF), working on the premise that many of our most dedicated conservationists are also avid anglers.
TU believes that fly fishing is an ideal vehicle for encouraging youth to participate in coldwater stewarship. In order to be a successful fly fisher, the young angler must develop an in-depth understanding of the aquatic habitat. This leads to a feeling of "ownership" of the resource and a concern for its future. As part of TU's efforts to identify and train the next generation of coldwater stewards, youth fly fishing education has become an integral part of our overall youth education agenda.
The First Cast program includes two integral components:
Educational package. First Cast is based on a proven fly fishing education curriculum written by Phil Genova. This flexible curriculum divides the skills of fly fishing into units and lessons and includes step-by step recommendations for organizing classes, events, field trips and community projects. You can download the TU First Cast Manual and Curriculum for information on how to start a program. These documents work in conjunction with Phil Genova's book, First Cast: Teaching Kids to Fly Fish, which can be purchased at major bookstores across the nation.
Expertise. TU members can provide sponsorship and direct instructional support to schools and organizations in communities across the country. A full-time staff member of the TU national office is available to provide technical assistance to TU chapters and work with other affiliated organizations.