Youth Diversity

GRTU Tomorrow Fund’s third year raises more than $30K for youth programs

Trout Unlimited volunteers have a lot to pass on in terms of passion for the great outdoors: between fly casting and fly tying, matching the hatch and tying knots our hands are literally full when it comes to inspiring and involving the next generation.

Every year, chapters put up record numbers of youth outreach hours in their communities, and kids of all ages learn about TU’s critical work to protect and restore our coldwater streams and rivers. 

To help local chapters accomplish this crucial work, the Headwaters Youth Program has been built around the premise that TU has something to offer any and all young people. Known as the Stream of Engagement, this model moves kids from entry level programs like TIC and kids fishing days into week-long fly fishing trout camps. The most passionate teens can then attend the national teen leadership Summit before heading off to start a TU Costa 5 Rivers club in college. Headwaters staff support the program through grants and donors in both the private and corporate sectors. We have an amazing Headwaters Board, plus a modest endowment, yet despite all of these efforts, it is always an uphill battle for us to get the program fully funded.

In 2017, members of our largest chapter, Guadalupe River Trout Unlimited (GRTU) in Texas demonstrated an enormous amount of commitment and foresight by establishing the Tomorrow Fund. The sole purpose of this annual $10K Fund is to raise money for Headwaters and provide program stability and a platform on which individuals, TU chapters, and other donors can make similar donations. In 2017 we set our goal at the $40K mark and reached it due to the overwhelming support of GRTU and other chapters; 2018 was also wonderful as chapters and donors put us over our fundraising goal of $30,000. And the news for 2019 is just as excellent: Tomorrow Fund donations and gifts totaling $30,850 have come in so far, and we are expecting a few more as the clock runs out on the year’s giving.

I hope your chapter will decide to step up and help us promote GRTU’s generosity as not only an example but as an opportunity. Can we count on you to donate in 2020? Whether it is $50 or $1000, everything counts!

To find out more about the Headwaters Youth Program and the GRTU Tomorrow Fund, contact me: To donate, please visit

Thanks for considering a gift to Headwaters and the future of TU!

Big gratitude to chapters and councils who donated in 2020:

  • 89er Chapter (OK)
  • Bucks County Chapter (PA)
  • Casper Grey Reef Chapter (WY)
  • Catherine Creek Chapter (NY)
  • Cherokee Chapter (TN)
  • Dakota Chapter (SD)
  • East Yellowstone Chapter (WY)
  • Finger Lakes Chapter (NY)
  • Forbes Trail Chapter (PA)
  • Fred Burroughs Chapter (NJ)
  • God’s Country Chapter (PA)
  • Grand Canyon Chapter (AZ)
  • Grand Valley Anglers (CO)
  • Greater Boston Chapter (MA)
  • Harry & Laura Nohr Chapter (WI)
  • High Desert Anglers (UT)
  • Idaho Council
  • Indian Nations Council (OK)
  • John Kennedy Chapter (PA)
  • Ken Lockwood Chapter (NY)
  • Kennebec Valley Chapter (ME)
  • Little Elkhart Chapter (IN)
  • Miller Van Winkle Chapter (MI)
  • Mokan Chapter (KS)
  • Oak Brook Chapter (IL)
  • Oklahoma 420 Chapter (OK)
  • Overmountain Chapter (TN)
  • Penns Creek Chapter (PA) (MA)
  • Pioneer Valley Chapter
  • Rabun Chapter (GA)
  • Seedskadee Chapter (WY)
  • Seneca Valley Chapter (MD)
  • Southern Colorado Greenbacks (CO)
  • Spring Creek Chapter (PA)
  • Thomas Jefferson Chapter (VA)
  • Upper Chattahoochee Chapter (GA)
  • Wild Rivers Chapter (WI)

By Franklin Tate. Franklin Tate directs TU's Headwaters Youth Program and lives in Asheville, North Carolina.