That’s The Thing About Fishing (TTTAF) was started by Glenn Cooper in the Mornington area, several years ago. Due to an injury, Glenn had time on his hands. Fishing had always been his passion and he came to realise that many younger people did not know how to fish and, probably, would never know how to fish. Glenn teamed up with another fisherman, Brian Rowley, who shared his vision of wanting to teach people about fishing and promote the sport.
Along the way, they also saw a need to assist with people battling mental health issues, disability groups, youth in trouble, men and women’s health groups and people suffering depression. For these people, fishing could be used as a therapeutic way of changing their lives by giving them a better quality of life and enjoying the benefits that fishing has to offer, both socially and personally.
On 30 March 2015 TTTAF was incorporated in Victoria as a not-for-profit Association, no A0065074G, full name is ‘That’s The Thing About Fishing with Guru Glenn and Nui Inc.’ This gives the TTTAF a legal status that protects the members from individual legal action and will assist in getting grants and funding from government and other sources.
Since their beginning, Glenn and Brian have developed relationships with many organisations including those caring for disabled and disadvantaged persons of all ages as well as holding clinics during school holidays, all at no cost to the participants.
- Build programs that will get people of all ages outside, away from computer games, living in front of a TV screen or on social media. They will learn to fish and, hopefully, this will encourage greater social interaction for them.
- Build a program to allow TTTAF volunteers to work with organisations in the mental health and disability sector, to use fishing as a way to improve lives.
- Work with law enforcement and schools to assist youth in trouble/at-risk teens by setting up programs in schools and elsewhere utilizing the benefits of fishing.
- Engage any groups or individuals that need an outlet because of the pressures of their life due to everyday issues.
To achieve its aims, TTTAF will continue to run fishing clinics and offer one-on-one support. The aim is for these clinics to attract a large number of children and their families plus all other groups and persons mentioned above, who will be taught the basics of fishing.
Teaching a person to fish is more than just learning to fish. It gives a person a sense of purpose and assists with mental health and motor skills. Our vision is also to alleviate boredom which can lead to senseless crimes, depression and, in the worst case, suicide. It is about teaching patience, building friendships and networks and giving our youth something productive to do. TTTAF also acts in a mentoring role for at-risk teens.
All the clinics run are staffed by volunteers, all of the equipment is supplied through donations but, at this time, the group has no government funding and relies solely on the generosity of the communities and fellow fisherman. The clinics are open to everyone, at no cost, and all abilities and backgrounds are catered for.