AFTCO, which donates 10 percent of its profit through its “10% Pledge” initiative, is launching an AFTCO/B.A.S.S. Nation Conservation Grant Program.
The program was announced by AFTCO president Bill Shedd at the B.A.S.S. Conservation Summit held during the GEICO Bassmaster Classic in Greenville, S.C., March 16-18.
“As part of our entrance into the bass fishing clothing world after 60 years focused on saltwater, AFTCO is pleased to partner with B.A.S.S. in this AFTCO/B.A.S.S. Nation Conservation Grant Program,” said Shedd in a statement. “We look forward to supporting local B.A.S.S. Nation conservation projects in their efforts to improve bass habitats and fisheries.”
Grants ranging up to $5,000 will be awarded to the best proposals. Funding will be available for a broad range of conservation-related projects for B.A.S.S. Nation states, clubs, high school or college teams.
Qualified projects must directly involve youth in such a way as to teach the importance of resource stewardship and the leadership role that anglers play as conservationists. Each project must have an endorsement of the local fisheries management agency, and work to accomplish goals of mutual benefit.
The project must have an evaluation component to determine success. A project may be part of a larger project and working with partners is strongly encouraged.
The application deadline is June 15th, and winners will be announced at ICAST in July.
"I have admired AFTCO's commitment to conservation for many years," said B.A.S.S. Conservation Director Gene Gilliland, "and I am very glad to see them step up with these B.A.S.S. Nation grants as they dive into the freshwater bass market. Bill Shedd and his family, the entire company, understand the importance of grass roots efforts to protect and enhance our fishery resources."