Wheelchair user enjoying river fishing


How we help to increase participation in angling and promote environmental literacy by developing key partnerships.


Foroige is Ireland’s most successful youth organisation, working with young people since 1952. Its purpose is to enable young people to involve themselves consciously and actively in their development and in the development of society. Inland Fisheries Ireland has been working with Foroige groups for many years through the Dublin Angling Initiative.

In 2020, the Education and Outreach team approached Foroige to develop the Go Fishing programme for their staff-led youth projects and targeted services.

Where does Foroige operate?

Foroige operates in 26 counties across Ireland comprising over 600 Foroige Clubs, 150 Youth Clubs, Big Brother Big Sister mentoring programmes, Foroige Youth Entrepreneurship, Youth Citizenship and Youth Leadership programmes.

This targeted service helps young people to deal with issues associated with poverty, marginalisation and social exclusion, underachievement in school, early school leaving, youth crime, substance abuse and family difficulties. 

How we work with Foróige

We delivers our Go Fishing programme to the young people in Foróige. Through this programme youths will learn the following skills:

  • Inland fisheries and angling
  • Biodiversity
  • Become a steward of our waterways and the environment
  • Knot-tying skills
  • Principles of Leave No Trace
  • Biosecurity
  • Water safety
  • Benefits of angling, particularly physical and mental wellbeing
  • Have fun learning a new hobby


Youthreach is an integrated education, training, and work experience programme for unemployed early school leavers between the ages of 15 to 20 years. Youthreach is operated through local county Education & Training Board Schools (ETBs), dedicated Youthreach centres (managed by ETBs as centres of education) and FÁS Community Training Centres.

Through these centres there are almost 6,000 places available nationwide under the Youthreach umbrella.

How it works

The programme generally lasts up to two years but is flexible to the individual’s needs. There is a strong emphasis on personal development, core skills, literacy/numeracy, communications, and information technology skills. The learners are also given a choice of vocational options and a work experience programme.

On completion of basic training, learners are awarded a Foundation Certification from QQI or the Junior Certificate. Once youths complete the basic training, they may continue to a Progression Programme towards their leaving certificate or a higher QQI award. They may also choose the option to undertake other skills training such as an apprenticeship course towards a career.

Benefits of Youthreach

Youthreach offers learners the opportunity to:

  • Make new friends
  • Improve self-confidence
  • Engage in work experience
  • Receive guidance on a career choice that best suits
  • Gain access to counselling

How we engage with Youthreach

Inland Fisheries Ireland engages with the learners of Youthreach through our Go Fishing programme as part of Youthreach's progression programme and Leaving Certificate Applied Programme (LCA).

This programme (which can be tailored to the learners needs) usually lasts for five weeks, consisting of a mix of theoretical and practical work. Learners are introduced to the role of Inland Fisheries Ireland and the benefits of angling. They learn about the biodiversity of our waterways with a focus on their local watercourse, becoming a steward of our waterways and the environment. They are introduced to the basics of angling and finally on their fifth week are taken on a fishing trip to a local venue.

The first four weeks of the programme can be facilitated as on online blended learning workshops on Zoom or Microsoft Teams platforms, or as outdoor classrooms.

Some feedback from Youthreach groups that have taken part:

The program was practical, informative and extremely beneficial in suiting the group’s needs. There was the perfect balance of awareness raising and practical applications. A thoroughly well-organized program”  – Youthreach Tuam

(References: education.ie , spunout.ie, citizensinformation.ie)

WATCH ON DEMAND: Spotlight on Lough Ree Access for All boat on RTE’s Nationwide, featuring Inland Fisheries Ireland

RTE’s Nationwide team visited the Lough Ree Access for All Boat in 2021, on the second largest lake in the Shannon System. Andrew Burnett from Inland Fisheries Ireland’s Education and Outreach team went out on the boat with angler Tony Parker and his wife Rhiannon, to demonstrate a specially adapted motorised fishing reel. Motorised angling reels have been described as a ‘game changer’ for anglers who have impaired motor skills.

The motorised fishing reel was funded by Inland Fisheries Ireland as part of the ‘Angling for All’ scheme and the reel was designed for anglers with disabilities or impaired motor skills.

Through the Angling for All grant, funded by Dormant Accounts, Lough Ree Access for All received €5,000 for the purchase of modified angling equipment and raingear, which is suitable for anglers with disabilities.