Success of our Fishing Has No Boundaries event requires a vast amount of planning, organization, and volunteer work. The event requires a minimum of 220 volunteers, 3 volunteers for each participant, to be successful. Short term (day of the event) and long term (planning/preparing) volunteers are necessary for the event to be a pleasant, enjoyable experience for everyone.
Planning and organizing the fishing aspects is only the tip of the iceberg. The event requires identifying and registering participants, understanding any unique needs a participant has and working with the rest of the chapter to ensure adequate provisions are in place. 3 meals for 220 people are planned, food donated/purchased, delivered, cooked, served, and cleaned up. Tables and chairs must be set up in advance, with accommodations for welcoming and registering participants. Locations for distribution of life vests, fishing tackle, and bait must be set up. All participants must be prepared for their day on the water getting outfitted with their life vests, fishing gear, bottled water, rain ponchos, etc. Wheelchair ramps and a large quantity of organized helping hands are required to help everyone get on board.
The fishing aspect requires the recruitment of 27 boats, preferably pontoon boats, with a captain and fishing guide/assistant for each boat. The special needs of each participant must be matched with the capabilities of each boat. 80 fishing poles must be prepared for fishing, with well stocked tackle boxes, bait, and nets for each boat. First thing in the morning each boat must be inspected to ensure it meets Coast Guard requirements including a fire extinguisher, emergency paddles, floatation devices, etc.
An important component of the day is the use of Sector Boats which patrol sections of Lake Springfield and check in with each fishing boat to ensure all is well and provide any assistance or supplies that may be required.
The entire event is dependent upon the fundraising volunteers who cultivate financial and equipment donations and event sponsors.
We would be excited to have you join us for the day of the event or for the planning and organization efforts. For more information see our event page, or contact us. Fill out the volunteer form and help make this event something special in the Central Illinois Community!