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fish with a cop program

FISH WITH A COP PROGRAM

The "Fish with a Cop" Program is still in the early stages of development and is subject to change.

objective

 

The primary objective of the “Fish with a Cop” program is to provide underprivileged

children and children without access to proper equipment the opportunity to go fishing while creating positive relationships with Law Enforcement.

 

The “Fish with a Cop” program will use this opportunity to bridge relations between the police and youth using fishing as an activity to work together. This will be an opportunity to alter children’s possible negative perception of police officers by providing them fun and valuable fishing experiences.

 

The “Fish with a Cop” program will aim to promote bass fishing amongst the youth of the Northeast South Dakota area as it is relatively unpopular. The northeast lakes of South Dakota have exemplary smallmouth and largemouth bass habitats. The “Fish with a Cop” program aims to promote bass fishing among youth.

 

challenges

Northeast South Dakota is home to many small towns as well as the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate Sioux Tribe. The original boundaries of the Tribe span over Roberts County, Marshall County, Day County, and Codington County South Dakota. This area is home to lakes with great smallmouth and largemouth habitats and fantastic fishing. Some children in the area are underprivileged and do not have access to productive activities. Most children in the area do not have access to boats or fishing equipment. The poverty rate in the area is higher than the national average.

 

COVID-19. The Coronavirus is an obvious challenge for many people today and this will be addressed when the time comes. With the tentative start date in 2022 it is unpredictable what situation we will be in with the virus at that time. Proper precautions will be taken when and if needed following local, state, and federal guidelines.

 

Equipment; the cost of fishing can be high. The assistance from sponsors to this program as well as to my guide service would be of great help to provide children with the proper equipment to fish. This may include but is not limited to life jackets, rods, reels, terminal tackle, soft plastics, etc. Current sponsorships to myself may be of assistance. I would ask that incoming sponsorships would go towards my guide service/ professional fishing and may endorse the program in addition.

 

Promotion of the program may initially be a struggle. After meeting with Roberts County, SD Sheriff Tyler Appel and Sisseton, SD Police Chief Jim Croymans they have backed the program and can assist in helping. A productive way of promotion will be through the schools as the Sisseton Police Department has a School Resource Officer (SRO). The Sisseton SRO will be able to assist in selecting or encouraging children to participate. Sheriff Appel can assist by Deputies that partake in school patrol may find or encourage children to participate. After meeting with Sisseton Wahpeton Tribal Police (SWO) Chief Gary Gaikowski, the SWO Tribal School Resource (SRO) Officer Meagan Lively will be of assistance as well. Other ways of promotion will be through other schools throughout the county, social media platforms included but not limited to Facebook, Instagram, etc as well as www.mishleroutdoors.com

 

Additional guides will be an issue at the initial inception of the program. This program has endless opportunity. I am unsure how large the program will expand and become however the plan is to initially start with myself, Trevor Mishler, as a guide and expand outwards with other police officers that also guide or fish.

 

strategy

 

This is a non-profit program where no officer or employee shall gain monetary compensation for services provided to the program. Any funds donated or received shall be used in the form of benefiting children participating.

 

There is a possible start date of spring 2021 however due to the ever-changing situation with the COVID-19 pandemic the tentative start of the program will be spring of 2022, allowing now through that time to help better prepare the program.

 

The initial goal of the program is to kick it off with a one day fishing event including but not limited to the following law enforcement agencies involvement:

  • Sisseton Police Department - Sisseton, SD

  • Roberts County Sheriff’s Office - Sisseton, SD

  • South Dakota Game Fish and Parks (SD GFP) - State of South Dakota

  • Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate Tribal Police Department - Agency Village, SD

  • South Dakota Highway Patrol - State of South Dakota 

 

The goal of the one-day event is to gauge interest of the children in the community and introduce fishing at a larger scale. The focus for the one-day event may stray from bass fishing to pan fishing for species such as perch and walleye, as we will not have enough boats and the event will be a shore fishing event. I would also include bass fishing as well.

 

The goal is to do the one-day event annually followed by me taking 1-2 children fishing at a time, giving them the opportunity to learn the sport. As more law enforcement officers with boats come on board the program we can expand to others taking the children out fishing as well. I will provide lessons and tips and basic skills to provide each child with the proper knowledge to successfully fish for smallmouth and largemouth bass. The goal is to provide the children with basic equipment after or during the experience for them to keep as well moving forward, for continued interest in fishing.

 

current sponsors

 

Current sponsors of the Fish with a Cop program are:​

I also have other tentative sponsors I have reached out to or am reaching out to for support of the program.

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