Dear FOAM Members,
On behalf of the board of directors know that we have great concern for the people, resources, and infrastructure affected by the recent flooding across south central Montana.
Many Montanans have suffered an enormous loss of property and livelihoods – including guides and outfitters. How we respond to this crisis in the short term is critical. While the flooding was confined to localized regions, Yellowstone Park and the Montana tourism and recreation industries are national treasures and assets. The entire state should be mobilized along with federal resources, assets, and funding.
FOAM, through our Fishing Outfitters of Montana Conservation Fund, is working with the Yellow Dog Flyfishing Adventures and the Yellow Dog Community and Conservation Foundation, the American Fly Fishing Trade Association (AFFTA) and their Fisheries Fund, and the International Game Fish Association’s Worldwide Anglers Relief Fund to establish a flood recovery fund. This work will look to direct financial aid to already established organizations and programs providing flood recovery efforts. Through this collaboration we are also in contact with federal agencies and representatives to get the necessary attention required for federal support of our regionally affected areas. We have also been in close contact with staff from Fish, Wildlife & parks regarding closures, restrictions, and anticipated opportunities for reopening sites.
FOAM is providing this page on our website dedicated solely to providing flood recovery information to guides and outfitters, as well as those that are seeking information that could help them in their recovery from the effects of these devastating conditions.
FOAM has established an online flood recovery group forum. This online group forum is available to group members and was started so that guides and outfitters across Montana can help each other and those affected by the recent flooding through the exchange of ideas and information. Also, a purpose of this group is to connect cancelled guides that now have availability to work with outfitters that have need for help, even if in different areas. Please email if you want to be invited to be part of that online group forum.
Montana’s natural resources are a national and international tourism and recreation destination. FOAM will campaign, and we encourage you too as well, to tell the story that we remain open for business. Montana, now more than ever, needs the support of the American people to recover from this disaster. Coming on the heels of two years of COVID restrictions, many small businesses and communities in the region were hanging by a thread, and this disaster has the potential to push them over the edge.
Thank you for your efforts to deal with this disaster. We welcome any feedback and wish to be a part of the solution to recovery from these recent events.
Michael A. Bias, Ph.D.
FOAM’s FLOOD RECOVERY ASSISTANCE PROGRAM:
The Fishing Outfitters Association of Montana (FOAM) is extremely excited to announce that we have generously received a $30,000 grant from the International Game Fish Association’s (IGFA) Worldwide Anglers Relief Fund (WARF) to help the affected guides and outfitters recover from the recent devastating floods throughout southcentral Montana. We are thankful for WARF’s ability to financially assist members of the guiding and outfitting community suffering from the effects of the recent flooding to specifically aid individuals and small businesses directly affected by the southcentral Montana flooding. Funds will be distributed through FOAM’s Montana Fishing Outfitters Conservation Fund, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization.
Founded in 1939, the IGFA is a nonprofit organization committed to the conservation of game fish and the promotion of responsible, ethical angling practices through science, education, rulemaking, record keeping and recognition of outstanding accomplishments in the field of angling. The IGFA also maintains world records in freshwater, saltwater, fly fishing and junior angler categories. The IGFA has members in more than 100 countries.
To address the impacts of devastating natural disasters and be prepared to respond to future catastrophes, the IGFA created the Worldwide Anglers Relief Fund (WARF) in 2017 with its partners at Costa Sunglasses. To date, the WARF has disbursed a total of $140,000 to recreational angling associations in the Florida Keys, Texas, Puerto Rico, the Florida Panhandle, The Bahamas, and Belize to help local captains and guides recover from natural disasters.
- 100% of donation received from the IGFA WARF will be distributed to guides and outfitters directly affected by the recent flooding in the Stillwater and Yellowstone basins.
- The distribution of funds will be managed and directed by FOAM’s staff and board of directors that are directly engaged in guiding and outfitting industry across Montana.
- Priority will be given to those guide and outfitter individuals that are the life blood of the fishing community.
- An example of recovery request would be lost revenue from cancelled trips.
- With the limited IGAF’s WARF program funding, FOAM may only partially fulfil a funding request.
If you were affected by the flooding across southcentral Montana during June of this year and are in need of assistance, please complete the FOAM APPLICATION FOR FLOOD RECOVERY ASSISTANCE and return it to email@example.com or mail it to FOAM RECOVERY ASSISTANCE, c/o FOAM, PO Box 485, Twin Bridges, MT 59754. DEADLINE FOR APPLICATIONS IS 15 SEPTEMBER 2022.
The Upper Yellowstone Watershed Group (UYWG) has been doing an outstanding job in keeping people informed on flood recovery issues.
UYWG has provide the following two valuable resources for flood recovery information:
Montana’s Fish, Wildlife & Parks has provided an invaluable resource for guides and outfitters and those recreating on our rivers in keeping us up to date on closures and restrictions on waterbodies and lands affected by the floods. Please go to their Current Restrictions and Closures page for up to date information.