Powell River Salmon Society has received nearly $15,000 from Yamaha Financial Services’ Stay Outdoors grant program.
Salmon society board members and staff were on hand at Two Wheel Tech Powersport and Marine, the local Yamaha dealer, on February 1, to receive the money from Derek Jantz, owner of the business, on behalf of Yamaha.
The salmon society is near and dear to Jantz. His father Phil was manager of the organization and ran it for years.
Derek said Phil was instrumental in building the hatchery at Duck Lake and at the Catalyst Paper Tis’kwat mill, plus the spawning channel.
“He was one of the founders, essentially,” said Derek. “I remember being up at Duck Lake when they were bringing in the materials and building the hatchery.
“My dad lived on site in a trailer at the salmon hatchery for years, so I have a big history. I went swimming in Lang Creek and I’ve been there lots.”
Derek said the salmon society has been a big part of his life, so he is pleased that the donation from Yamaha is going toward supporting the efforts of the society. He said Yamaha has a program that he “kind of knew about” and Tyler Bartfai from the salmon society reached out and asked Derek if he would vouch for the society in an application for the funding.
“I took it upon myself to write a letter to Yamaha, giving my perspective of how important the salmon society is with the salmonid enhancement, and how the society really helps the community here,” said Derek. “It’s really important. Being on the business side of things, as an outboard motor dealer, a lot of my customers are fishermen. That’s their way of life.
“Sports fishing adds to the economy of the province. Having salmonid enhancement is vital.”
Derek said he was astonished when Yamaha called to let him know about the donation.
“It was a little emotional and I was proud of it,” said Derek. “It’s just good to be part of it. I’m proud of it.”
Derek said the salmon society does great work, including the many hours put in by volunteers to sustain the operation.
“There’s a lot of people out there helping out, for sure,” said Derek.
He said he has tried to help the salmon society in past, donating items for fundraising dinners. He tries to help where he can, he added.
“I’m glad this donation has happened,” said Derek. “It’s a big boost that they needed.”
Salmon society president Rod Tysdal said the donation was a great shot in the arm for the qathet-based organization.
“It will help provide fish food for the year,” said Tysdal. “This is how important these things are to us. It’s a big donation and we greatly appreciate it. We encourage others in the community to come forward and help, too. We are always looking to raise money for salmon enhancement.
“We haven’t received any increases from the government for our operation, so we are relying more and more on the local community. We appreciate all the donations we receive and that’s why we have the salmon foundation, where people can make donations online.”
Tysdal said the money presentation was an awesome day for those who care about salmonid enhancement.
For more information on Powell River Salmon Society’s salmon preservation iniitiative, go to salmonpreservation.org.
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