PROJECT HEALING WATERS FLY FISHING, INC. (PHWFF) takes great pleasure in presenting the Club Excellence Award to Diablo Valley Fly Fishers (DVFF) for its partnership with the PHWFF Martinez Program from 2010 to 2020. During this period, DVFF provided excellence in outreach within their geographical area, fundraising support, PHWFF program services, volunteer recruitment and retention, program innovation, and increased community awareness for the PHWFF mission, vision, and core values.
As one of the largest fly fishing clubs in Northern California, DVFF provided a substantial resource for excellent fly fishing talent and volunteers for the PHWFF program. Affiliated with the local Department of Veterans Affairs Outpatient Clinic, at least 20 club members provide regular support to the program and another 20-30 provide event-specific support. Volunteer retention remained strong from the program’s beginning. DVFF hosts a quarterly “New Member Orientation” which covers every major area of club activity, including PHWFF. This provides each new member with the opportunity to become involved with the club’s PHWFF program.
During the program meetings, Fly Fishers International certified casting instructors lead casting lessons and fly tying classes feature one of the West’s top fly tiers along with a plethora of great tiers from DVFF. A DVFF member hosts rod building classes in his home each year. A DVFF member took the lead in elevating the PHWFF water safety program, focusing on wading safety with the use of his swimming pool for training. DVFF also recruited a volunteer leader to plan its outings that enhanced the rehabilitation of participants. These outings include 10-12 remarkable overnight outings per year in California, Oregon, and Wyoming. DVFF board members also helped the program raise substantial funds for outings and make fundraising efforts like the on-line auction successful.
DVFF is also a leader in encouraging fly fishing engagement in many local community areas. This helped the PHWFF Martinez Program reach key donor entities including the Lesher Foundation, Rossmoor Rotary Club, Martinez Kiwanis Club, and Lamorinda Rotary. DVFF members initiated the first on-line auction in 2015 which became the primary annual fundraiser. Additional funding comes from the annual Sacramento River Delta bass fishing event, the Pleasanton Fly Fishing Show, and community grants.
The program’s volunteers observe clear healing outcomes in its participants. During this period, DVFF created a remarkable program where the participants remain highly engaged, inspired, and motivated to serve others. Due to the exceptional leadership within the program, some participants also transitioned to volunteers, thereby adding to the sustainability of the program and vitality of DVFF.
Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing, Inc. is proud to bestow on the Diablo Valley Fly Fishers the Club Excellence Award for its tireless and extraordinary service to Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing, Inc. and to the disabled veterans whom this organization serves.