Fresh fish waiting for anglers

Fishing Forever program helps shut-ins get out to the lake

The B.C. Wildlife Federation’s Fishing Forever program gets people out enjoying the sport.

The B.C. Wildlife Federation’s Fishing Forever program gets people out enjoying the sport.

Brian Borrett has a hard time tying a fishing lure onto a line these days. The avid fisherman suffered a stroke recently and his fingers don’t work as well as they used to.

However, the organizer of the upcoming Fishing Forever event at the Coombs Country Campground gamely keeps at it, knowing he’s one of the lucky ones who can still get around.

Borrett, along with members of the Parksville-Qualicum Fish and Game Club, will be on hand on Friday, May 27, to help elderly and disabled residents get their lines in the water and — if they’re lucky — to reel in a whopper or two.

The Fishing Forever program, he said, is designed to help people with mobility issues get out of their homes, apartments or care facilities and spend some quality time on the lakeshore, dipping their lines and angling for one of the two-pound trout that were released into the small lake on the property.

“They really enjoy it,” he said. “It’s good to get out into the open air so they aren’t just looking at the same four walls. They have a wonderful time.”

This year’s program will  involve residents of Stanford Place, Trillium Lodge, The Gardens in Qualicum Beach and Eagle Park Lodge, as well as clients from the Canadian National Institute for the Blind (CNIB) and the MS Society.

“We’re expecting about 100 people,” he said. “I just put the fish in yesterday, so I know there are some nice two-pounders.”

Last year, he said, participants pulled in about 15 fish.

Fishing Forever is a program of the B.C. Wildlife Federation.