LAKELAND, Fla. -- Lakeland native William Dunn created the nonprofit, Take a Kid Fishing FL, to improve the lives of foster children and fatherless kids through mentoring and taking them on fishing excursions.

  • Nonprofit mentors foster children through fishing
  • Take a Kid Fishing FL was created by Lakeland native William Dunn
  • Dunn takes 20 to 25 children on each fishing trip 

Bruce is just one of the teens who goes on the deep sea fishing trips.

"It lets me get out of the house and explore," Bruce said. "I just love to fish."

Due to him being in foster care, we were not allowed to reveal his real name.

He's been in it for three years, living in a group home. Bruce said he ended up there when both of his parents were in and out of jail. He said fishing helps take his mind off of things.

"It teaches me patience and stuff like that, because sometimes you don't always catch fish," Bruce said.

Dunn partners with Double Eagle Deep Sea Fishing in Clearwater for the trips. He hopes to take the kids on the trips at least eight times a year.

"I just feel it will give them hope," Dunn said.  "I get a lot of letters from them. They write me letters after these trips saying they've never felt love before. Some of these kids have been in foster care all of their life."

Fishing isn't the only thing happening out here. Dunn said this is also an opportunity to mentor the kids and teach them life skills.

"We explain different species of fish and just being there for them, just being pretty much a father figure for them. What 90 percent of them don't have a father," Dunn said.

Dunn usually takes about 20 to 25 kids on each trip.