navigation bar
   
njdep  
  New Jersey Division of Fish & Wildlife New Jersey Division of Fish & Wildlife
 
njdep home f&w home
Facebook Logo Instagram logo

Hooked on Fishing - Not on Drugs Program in New Jersey

 

Hooked on Fishing-Not on Drugs Team Leader Training in July
   Hooked on Fishing-Not on Drugs Podcast with Liz Jackson (DEP Website)

Liz Jackson and son fishing New Jersey's Hooked on Fishing-Not on Drugs Program provides a great opportunity to get kids involved in positive recreational activities. Growing up in a big city, my parents saw value in having me spend my summers outdoors enjoying nature. These experiences afforded me the chance to discover that there is more to the world and my role in it than what the concrete jungle has to offer. Likewise, the goal of this program is to introduce youth to the fun and excitement of fishing, and to engage them in meaningful life skills, so that they also can imagine unlimited possibilities for themselves.

Liz Jackson, HOFNOD Coordinator

HOFNOD FAQs

Fishing is an activity that can be started at any age by any person regardless of gender, physical size or athletic ability. Fishing can also be enjoyed individually or with family and friends. A great way to introduce youth to fishing is through the "Hooked on Fishing - Not on Drugs" (HOFNOD) Program.

"Hooked on Fishing - Not on Drugs" is a unique, nationally recognized program created by the Future Fisherman Foundation. In 2012, former Governor Christie signed legislation establishing the statewide implementation of the HOFNOD program. The legislation provided initial funding through an appropriation of $200,000 from the state's Drug Enforcement and Demand Reduction Fund. (See below for the identical State Assembly and Senate bills.)

The goal of New Jersey's program is to encourage school-aged children to avoid tobacco, drug and alcohol usage by providing alternative activities that involve learning to fish, appreciating aquatic and environmental resources, and developing positive life skills. The program will provide students with access to extracurricular outlets that utilize New Jersey’s incredible outdoor recreational assets.

The NJDEP Division of Fish & Wildlife wants to partner with schools, community- and faith-based youth organizations willing to provide on-going and sustained engagement in HOFNOD activities throughout the year. The "Hooked on Fishing - Not on Drugs" program is flexible enough to be offered in different ways, such as:

  • a weekly enrichment activity in summer youth programs
  • an on-going educational physical education activity in after school settings
  • integrated into grades 4-12 school curricula
  • as a year-round supplemental activity of community-based youth organizations (e.g. Youth Corps, Boys/Girls Clubs and faith-based entities)

HOFNOD is an excellent way for young people to participate in constructive recreation and to develop a positive sense of self-worth. The program helps:

  • nurture self-esteem and confidence
  • develop higher order critical thinking and problem-solving skills
  • reveal alternate activities for young people instead of the pitfalls of drug and alcohol use
  • foster opportunities and build skills to explore freshwater & marine careers

During the program, students learn:

  • freshwater and marine ecosystems
  • proper outdoor ethics and being a good steward of their local environment
  • respect for themselves, others and the world around them
  • how, when and where to fish
  • life skills like preparing and cooking their catch

High school team on beach at Governor's Surf Fishing Tournament
Division Director Larry Herrighty, IBSP Superintendent Jen Clayton and HOFNOD Coordinator Liz Jackson (back row from left), and DEP Commissioner Catherine R. McCabe (center), join a high school team at the Governor's Surf Fishing Tournament on May 20, 2018.
Click to enlarge
Adult-led lessons provide students with hands-on, real life experience and incorporate peer teaching and mentoring in the process. Guest experts can be used to teach supplemental sessions like fly tying and casting, spearfishing, introduction to SCUBA diving, kayaking and boating safety. Available funding through the HOFNOD program may be used to offset the cost of staff training & materials, fishing and program gear, and transportation for youth fishing trips.

Another activity HOFNOD teams can participate in is the Youth Fishing Challenge, held each year on New Jersey's first (of two) Free Fishing Days. Registered youth participants are eligible to receive prizes for the fish they catch during the event.

The core message of the "Hooked on Fishing - Not on Drugs" program is that you don't need to use tobacco, alcohol or drugs to have fun! It's the type of program that not only will help reduce drug and alcohol use in youth, but will also bring families closer together by giving them an inexpensive outdoor recreation activity they can all participate in.

For more information call 908-637-4125 ext. 122 or e-mail hofnod@dep.nj.gov.

HOFNOD Team Registration Form (pdf, 210kb)
HOFNOD Youth Registration and Photo Release Agreement (pdf, 100kb)

HOFNOD Teams
The HOFNOD program is organized in community teams found throughout the state. Teams are led by Team Leaders who dedicate their time, skills and energy conducting the program for local youths. Want to find a local HOFNOD Team? Locate a group near you from the list below:

ATLANTIC

Atlantic County Hooked on Fishing-Not on Drugs Coalition
4805 Nawakwa Blvd.
Mays Landing, NJ 08330
Adam Erskine - Erskine_Adam@aclink.org
Cell: 609-675-1385
Sheriff's Dept.: 609-909-7200

Adam Witcraft, Atlantic County Parks and Rec Manager
109 State Hwy 50 South
Mays Landing, NJ 08330
Adam Witcraft - Witcraft_Adam@aclink.org
609-625-7000 x5400
Fax: 609-645-5868

BERGEN

Hackensack River Junior Stewardship
Hackensack Riverkeeper
231 Main St.
Hackensack, NJ 07047
Jodi Jamieson - jodi@hackensackriverkeeper.org

BURLINGTON

Burl-Cam HOFNOD
60 Huntington Drive
Southampton, NJ 08088
Heather Milloy - heathertricoche@comcast.net
609-234-1357
Vic Gorin - vgorin@creativemachining.com
609-468-6106

CAMDEN

HOFNOD Gloucester Township
H.O.F.N.O.D.G.T.
Hazel & Kendrick Aves.
Sicklerville, NJ
Bob Johnston - hofnodgt@yahoo.com
856-491-5366
www.hofnodgt.com

CUMBERLAND

Commercial Twp. Recreation Department
69 East Avenue
Bridgeton, NJ 08302
Kevin Young - kevyoung67@yahoo.com
856-785-1611

Compass Academy Hooked on Fishing 4-H Club
Downe Township Hooked on Fishing 4-H Club
Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Cumberland County
291 Morton Avenue
Millville, NJ 08332
Donna Griebau, 4-H Program Assistant - donnagr@co.cumberland.nj.us
856-451-2800 x3
www.cumberland4h.org

Cumberland County HOFNOD 4H
P.O. Box 181
Heislerville, NJ 08324
Joe Haase - Joseph.Haase@yahoo.com
Cell/text: 856-332-4834

Millville Police Department, PAL
School Resource Officer / Traffic Safety Unit
18 S. High St.
PO Box 609
Millville, NJ 08332
Officer Richard Kott #104 - Richard.kott@pd.millvillenj.gov
Cell: 856-498-3309
Work: 856-825-7010 x7623

ESSEX

ASPIRA, Inc. of New Jersey
390 Broad Street, 3rd Floor
Newark, NJ 07104
Elena Larranaga - elarranaga.aspiranj@gmail.com
973-484-7554 x215
www.aspira.org

East Orange Department of Recreation
1 Fellowship Circle
East Orange, NJ 07017
Stanley Edwards - stanley.edwards@eastorange-nj.gov
973-414-4141

Quitman Street Community School
21 Quitman Street
Newark, NJ 07103
Jessica Allen
973-733-6947
www.nps.k12.nj.us/qtm/

HUNTERDON

Hunterdon County Educational Services Commission
37 Hoffman's Crossing Road
Califon, New Jersey 07830
Dennis R. Balodis - DBalodis@HunterdonESC.org
Work: 908-439-4280 x4510
Cell: 908-963-9595
www.HunterdonESC.org

MONMOUTH

Jersey Devil Kids Camp
Jersey Devil Sportfishing
Captain Brian Rice - brian@jerseydevilsportfishing.com
732-996-6372
www.jerseydevilcharters.com

OCEAN

Reel Fun Fishing
Boating Education And Rescue (BEAR)
Mike & Debbie Bennett - bear@boatingeducationandrescue.org
732-492-4009
www.boatingeducationandrescue.com

PASSAIC

Silk City Anglers
City of Paterson/DHHS- Municipal Alliance Prevention Program
125 Ellison St.
Paterson, NJ 07505
Tenee Joyner - tjoyner@patersonnj.gov
W. Raheem Smallwood - wsmallwood@patersonnj.gov
973-321-1242

Compete For Life (21st Century Community Learning Centers)
New Jersey Community Development Corporation
61-127 Preakness Ave. - Room 105A
Paterson, NJ 07522
Lynn Yakimik - lyakimik@paterson.k12.nj.us
973-945-6466

SUSSEX

Byram Intermediate School
3 Highland Ave.
Andover, NJ 07821
Betty Saar, Special Educator
973-271-4658
www.byramschools.org

High Point Regional High School
High Point Outdoor Recreation Program HOFNOD
299 Pidgeon Hill Road
Sussex, NJ 07461
Ed Blevins - surfkaster@optonline.net
973-875-3101

Sussex County HOFNOD 4H
35 Newton Avenue
Branchville, NJ 07826
Natalie Burger - info@hiddenpasturesalpacas.com
973-948-6800
Rory Halpin - RoryH@advancere.com
732-713-2567

UNION

City of Plainfield - Division of Parks & Recreation
510 Watchung Avenue
Plainfield, NJ 07060
Veronica Taylor, Superintendent of Parks & Recreation - veronica.taylor@plainfieldnj.gov
908-753-3096
www.plainfieldnj.gov/cms.aspx?page_id=214&page_name=Recreation

Team Linden
Linden, NJ
Rhashonna Cosby-Hurling - rcosbyhurling@linden-nj.org
Councilwoman, Ward 5
908-718-7933

WARREN

Spring Valley Sunnies
Ridge and Valley Conservancy
White Lake Natural Resource Area
120 Stillwater Rd.
Hardwick, NJ 07825
James Watling - james@ridgeandvalleyconservancy.org

Click photos to enlarge

Boy with big bass


Youths fishing at pond


Girl with fish


Boy with sunfish


Group fishing on lake dock


Girl and dad with fish

Resources
Fishing Education
Teacher/Education Resources
FunNewJersey.com (Fun things to do with kids in NJ)

Enabling Legislation:
Assembly Bill 638 1R
Senate Bill 178

  Adobe Acrobat Some files on this site require adobe acrobat pdf reader to view. download the free pdf reader  
bottom footer contact dep privacy notice legal statement accessibility statement nj home nj home citizen business government services a to z departments dep home

division of fish & wildlife: home | links | contact f&w
department: njdep home | about dep | index by topic | programs/units | dep online
statewide: njhome | citizen | business | government | services A to Z | departments | search

Copyright © State of New Jersey, 1996-2018
Department of Environmental Protection
P.O. Box 402
Trenton, NJ 08625-0402

Last Updated: July 20, 2018