“The Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries strives to make positive impacts on Latino families in Virginia through fishing and conservation education. A priority for DGIF is to connect all people with more information, access and opportunities to participate in outdoor recreational activities in Virginia,” said Eddie Herndon, Recruitment, Retention and Reactivation (R3) Coordinator for DGIF. “This can only be achieved through partnerships with organizations like the Hispanic Access Foundation. With their continued help and collaboration, DGIF hopes to make significant strides to connect Latinos to the outdoors for years to come.”
Virginia has the 16th largest Latino population in the nation and the University of Virginia projects that by 2040 Latinos will make up nearly 23 percent of the state’s population. Yet only a fraction of the state’s anglers are Latino, which underscores the importance of introducing the sport to the community, as they will play a critical role as environmental stewards in the future.
“Events like this help introduce the wonders of the natural environment, which for many is just a short drive away, but it also teaches the youth how to respect and protect what they will come to enjoy so much,” said Maite Arce, President and CEO of Hispanic Access Foundation. “Latinos share a passion for the outdoors and hold a strong belief that we have a moral obligation to be good stewards. Not only are we exposing Latinos to new skills, but we are helping to foster that passion.”