29. - Commission a Presidential Hunting and Shooting Sports Partnership Council
Text from the Recreational Hunting and Wildlife Conservation Plan, 2008, Page 30
Such a council would design, establish, and promote an American Hunting and Wildlife Foundation. The Foundation would be charged with promoting wildlife conservation and reversing declining trends in hunter participation. The Foundation could:
- Imitate the structure of the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation.
- Focus on recruitment and retention of hunters and shooters.
- Seek other funds beside the Pittman-Robertson funds unless the resulting reduction in P-R funding to states is offset with an expansion of the P-R program or changing the federal aid match rate to 90:10.
- Promote hunting to young and minority people, the disadvantaged and handicapped through structured hunting, shooting mentoring, and education programs. The initiative would initially focus on coordination between existing programs to avoid redundancy and the need to develop an entirely new framework and capacity.
- Work with state and local school officials and boards and with the U.S. Department of Education to place curricula on the role of hunting in conservation and wildlife management.
- Provide family programs and teaching camps on a variety of outdoor and adventure activities, i.e., birding, hunting, shooting, and fishing.
- Engage energy companies on opportunities for youth and minorities hunts on company properties.
- Develop new partnerships with non-land/wildlife management departments and agencies (i.e., the State Department) and the private sector (ESPN Outdoors, MTV, the International Mountain Biking Association (IMBA), the Boy Scouts, and equipment retailers and manufacturers). Develop ideas and mechanisms for capturing the imagination and interest of young and minority people and demographics not traditionally engaged in fishing, hunting, and other forms of outdoor recreation.
- Achieve overall gains in career conservationists through integration of the North American Model of Wildlife Conservation into educational exhibits and programs; a joint initiative to assist schools and universities in the creation of the curriculum (based on the North American Model of Wildlife Conservation) and promotional activities necessary to urge the development of a new base of career conservationists; market conservation education to teachers urging them to cultivate their passion for wildlife and conservation and to pass it on to their students.
- Promote the ten-year Recreational Hunting and Wildlife Conservation Plan and measure progress.
- Provide funding incentives to states that have effective (measurable) programs in hunter recruitment and retention.
- Administer competitive matching grants to state wildlife agencies for programs and initiatives directed at generating youth and minorities involvement in hunting and hunting ethics.
- Report periodically on progress toward increasing recruitment and retention.