We mentor children in foster care.
Our aim is to improve the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people in foster care through the sport of fly fishing.
Young people attending our projects are supported through mentorship in fly fishing, where we provide opportunities for them to have fun, build confidence and self-esteem, develop resourcefulness and resilience, learn new skills and develop a meaningful connection with the natural world.
Join our #FlyFishingFamily and help us change young lives through fly fishing.
WHY MENTORING, FLY FISHING AND FOSTER YOUTH?
Fly fishing and mentoring offer opportunities for children in foster care to build self-esteem and a develop a deeper connection with the outdoors. Some say fly fishing can be meditative and causes the angler to forget their concerns as they focus in on their floating fly. For a foster child, taking a break from being worried and simply spending time in nature catching fish is essential. We are honoured to work with some of the best lead mentors and mentors, who understand the value in the gift of time and fly fishing for foster children specifically. We are passionate about The Mayfly Project UK and invite you to join in our efforts!
“I couldn’t believe the change in behaviour and spirit prior to our outing with TMP and then post outing—it was night and day. The children came feeling nervous and struggling to stay positive, and then once they started participating in the project their behaviour and attitude changed. Seeing the children smiling, feeling good about their accomplishments and themselves, enjoying time in nature and excited about life, was worth more than we could have ever expected.”
— Reflections of a Care Caseworker
Benefits of fly fishing
Some report that when they return from a day of fly fishing they feel as if they have participated in a day of talk-therapy without having to say a word. We use fly fishing as a mentoring tool for children in foster care because of its meditative sequences—therapists often prescribe fly fishing to those who suffer with PTSD, depression, and anxiety disorders as a coping mechanism.
From our experience, children that participate in our mentoring sessions experience the calming effects of time near water, improved self-esteem from fly fishing successes and learning new skills, and they find so much joy when they finally trick a fish with a fly they tied themselves!
IMPRoving mental health and wellbeing
Beyond the fun of fly fishing, during their time with
The Mayfly Project UK, our mentees follow a curriculum that includes a chapter called ‘Characteristics of an Angler’, which details how nature and fly fishing can improve mental health and wellbeing.
These characteristics include: practicing patience, finding brain rest, building resilience, seeking wisdom and appreciating the environment. During our project, we reflect back to this and ensure that our mentees are in an emotionally and physically safe environment so they can have the best experiences.
In 2022, TMPUK became an approved partner for
Get Fishing for Wellbeing - a social prescribing project sponsored by the Angling Trust that recognises the beneficial aspects of angling to boost mental health and wellbeing.
Providing 1:1 Mentoring
Our caseworkers report that our mentee’s favourite part of joining in The Mayfly Project UK is having their own mentor. We provide a 1:1 mentor ratio and also a 3 in a group safety policy so that our mentees have the optimal opportunity to learn how to fly fish and receive positive attention, while also being in a safe environment.
We believe children learn what they live, so these interactions with positive role models and mentors is an experience that will impact their lives beyond the time on the water together. We all remember the person that took time from their lives to take us fishing, and children in foster care deserve that experience.