The legacy of a legendary Norfolk angler is living on through a new enterprise set up to support young people and adults with their mental health through fishing.
Lisa Wilson, the daughter of TV fisherman John Wilson, started the John Wilson Fishing Enterprise in 2019 to use her experience as a social worker to help those supported by social care experience nature through fishing.
Growing up, the Old Catton resident spent lots of time fishing with her late father, and decided she could combine her passions to help others who may not have experience of nature and the benefits to their mental health.
The mum-of-four said: “When you are fishing you need to be calm. You are having to problem solve and think why you’re not catching and reel in your line and cast out again. It’s a low form of cardio.
“I started the enterprise as it keeps him with me all the time. To carry on his legacy and to carry on the strong sense of social work he was doing without noticing.
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“I know first hand the benefits that the outdoors can bring. Combine this with the art of fishing and all the skills this can teach, and you have an excellent recipe to deliver the promotion of mental health to all children and adults that need it most.”
She has five fishing coaches who help individuals to hone their fishing skills, as well as communication, confidence and self-esteem through learning.
Miss Wilson said: “We are spending time doing something positive whether learning skills or rewarding for achieving a task they did not know that morning. It’s social work at its best.”
Miss Wilson aims to show the benefits of taking in blue and green spaces and work in partnership with fisheries in the region, including Reepham Fishery.
She said: “It creates calmness being around nature.
“You do not realise how good nature is for you until you get home. If they [young people] like it they will want to do it again.”
The enterprise also provides bush craft activities to help individuals learn about basic survival skills.
To enquire about fishing sessions visit www.jwfe.co.uk