What is Fishcare?

Written by Sarah Van Stokrom, State Coordinator Fishcare Victoria

Fishcare is a volunteer based organisation aimed at educating the next generation of recreational anglers in safe and sustainable fishing practices that will ensure the future of our waterways and fish stocks. Fishcare is strongly supported through the Recreational Fishing License Trust and works with other organisations, government, service providers, schools and the broader community, to deliver sustainable fishing education programs as well as how to fish clinics.

Many people who attend workshops have either never been fishing and don’t know where to start; or have been once or twice but their experience was marred by no fish or catastrophic fishing line tangles.

At our workshops, we cover all the basics such as, fishing rules, fish friendly tackle, simple rigs, baiting up and how to cast. We discuss the importance of fish habitat and the environmental issues of the area being fished and, address the biological aspects of locally important recreational species. Combined with the fishing expertise of our staff and volunteers and some safety tips, children and their families finish with a new found confidence and an enthusiasm for fishing.

Fish Puzzles – teaching fish anatomy at Enviroweek, Mt Martha.

At each session, we have plenty of fishing rods and reels for people to loan or, people can bring their own fishing gear. The latter option is a good idea as we can give the equipment a once over (especially if it has been sitting in the shed for a year or two) and they finish with a properly rigged fishing rod to continue their angling exploits.

Portsea Camp How to Fish clinic – rods are ready to go!

Besides the thrill of catching a fish, the best thing about fishing is the opportunity to spend time with your family and friends alongside some of the most beautiful beaches, estuaries lakes and rivers anywhere in the world.

Fishcare Victoria has had an exciting summer season, working with multiple partners to deliver fishing clinics and workshops across the state. From, Mallacoota to Portland, Shepparton to Cowes, we have hosted over 200 workshops that have reached 4500 participants, spreading the message of sustainable recreational fishing and promoting the stewardship of our aquatic environments across Victoria.

Partnering with Parks Victoria at Wilsons Promontory to deliver How to Fish clinics during school holidays.

We have also had a changing of the guard with a farewell to Mike Burgess and a welcome to Sarah Van Stokrom as the new State Coordinator.

“I am amazed at the contribution Fishcare Victoria makes to the community and to sustainable recreational fishing,” Sarah said. “I am looking forward to working with the staff and state committee and meeting the dedicated groups and volunteers around the state. I feel Fishcare is in an ideal position to build on its successes and further explore funding opportunities to increase staffing resources, memberships and on-ground outcomes.

“I would really love to see Fishcare Victoria grow as a trusted and respected partner, and further invest in relationships and networks to build the future of sustainable recreational fishing across Victoria.”

Fishcare Victoria is always on the lookout for more volunteers to assist in spreading the message of the stewardship of our fisheries and sustainable fishing practices and, we would love to hear from clubs or individuals who are interested in becoming involved.

Should you want to know more about Fishcare visit or contact the State Coordinator, Sarah Van Stokrom, at E:[email protected] or M: 0437 672 242.

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