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Anglers for Ukraine appeal gets off to a flying start
In response to the worsening humanitarian crisis in Ukraine, following the brutal attacks on civilians by Russian forces, the Angling Trust has set up a fundraising initiative for those in the British angling community who wish to help.
Anglers for Ukraine was launched at The Big One fishing show in Farnborough this weekend with anglers contributing to a bucket collection. One generous exhibitor, fishing brand and retailer OUTLAW PRO, donated all takings from their stand, totalling around £10,000, to the appeal giving it a flying start. The company will be doing the same at the Essex Carp Show on 26-27th March.
Carp legend and TV personality Ali Hamidi came to offer his support and top Ukrainian angler Serhii Vasylchyshyn has expressed gratitude on behalf of his fellow countrymen.
UK-based Serhii Vasylchyshyn, from the Ukrainian Sport Fishing Federation, said:
“It means a great deal to us Ukrainians to know that our fellow anglers in the UK are helping us in this time of great need. Our country is at war following a vicious and unprovoked invasion that is killing innocent civilians and destroying our towns and cities. The Ukrainian people are bravely resisting but they need every assistance possible.”
Ian Smith, Managing Director from OUTLAW PRO. said:
“The heartbreaking scenes that we are seeing coming from Ukraine are unimaginable in modern day society. It seems that speaking to so many people this last week that the invasion has affected countless people in the UK personally with friends and family that are living in that part of the world.
“It’s at times like this we have to do whatever we can to try and ease the suffering of those directly affected by this tragedy. We started our efforts to raise money at the The Big One show at Farnborough but we will continue to raise money in one form or another for as long as the conflict continues. It’s just the right thing to do.”
All monies collected will be given directly to the British Red Cross Ukrainian Crisis Appeal to which the Government has pledged to match fund up to £20 million. An online donation route has been established via a special Just Giving page here.
Last week, the Angling Trust supported the decision taken by the Confédération Internationale de la Pêche Sportive (CIPS) – the body that oversees competitive international angling – to exclude Russia and Belarus from all international competitions in solidarity with both the people of Ukraine and Ukrainian anglers who regularly compete in international competitions.
Martin Salter, Head of Policy at the Angling Trust, added:
“The scenes on our TV screens are almost too much to bear with over 1.5 million people bombed or driven out of their homes. The scale of human suffering is appalling and will only get worse. Sporting boycotts, including the recent ban on Russian and Belarusian angling teams, along with economic sanctions and direct military aid, all have a part to play in trying to bring this bloody conflict to an end. However, we are pleased to be able to offer a direct route for the angling community to play its part in helping to raise funds for much needed medical supplies, food and shelter for those innocent and terrified civilians who are literally running for their lives.”
Other fundraising initiatives planned by Angling Trust staff and members of the Voluntary Bailiff Service (VBS) include the sale of 1,000 special lapel pins branded with the “Anglers for Ukraine” logo. They are aiming to raise at least £5,000 by asking for donations of £5. Other initiatives by angling clubs and the tackle trade that donate to the appeal can be publicised through the Angling Trust.
Anglers are being urged to donate whatever they can by visiting the Just Giving page or through local fundraising initiatives.
Martin Salter and Ali Hamidi launching Anglers for Ukraine at The Big One at the weekend