Do you love the freedom that comes from being out on the ocean?
For most, it’s a quintessential New Zealand rite and one that we all enjoy
either as boat owners or as the guest of others.
So … imagine being told that boating and fishing were no more.
That’s what happened to Bryce Dinneen, the founder of the Wish 4 Fish Charitable Trust.
In early 2007, Bryce Dinneen (a then 29 year old Tauranga avid boatee and saltwater angler), was out on the Wellington waterfront, enjoying a Saturday afternoon with his mates. It was all harmless fun and camaraderie until Bryce dived into shallow water, breaking his C2, C3, C5 and C6 vertebrae and irreparably damaging his spinal cord. Before the day was out, he was being airlifted to Christchurch ICU before being moved two weeks’ later to the Burwood Spinal Unit. Bryce was to spend eight weeks in head traction to stabilise his break and a further nine months in rehabilitation, before being discharged in December 2007, nearly a year after his accident.
Prior to that day, one of Bryce’s main hobbies was saltwater fishing, and his return home in the Bay of Plenty in December 2007 only highlighted how difficult it was to continue to pursue his passion.
Not one to rest on his laurels, Bryce’s fortitude, determination and resolve came to the fore. He thought about the challenge, and reflected on how many others must be affected, and decided he would start a charity called Wish 4 Fish – first and foremost to raise funds to assist those with disabilities to get out on the water, and then more latterly, to purchase and modify a charter fishing vessel for disabled people.
Bryce’s enthusiasm for his Trust has been contagious, and he is now supported by a team of trustees, patrons, ambassadors, crew and volunteers. With trustee support, he is the mastermind behind many fund raising events including fishing competitions, tradeshow stands, branded products, and speaking engagements … and now he is launching his Wish 4 Fish Supporters Club as a way for those supporting him to help make a difference.