Guide to Share The Stoke's global programs
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 7 November, 2014 - Around the world coastal towns are filled with kids who yearn for the possibility to stand on a board in the water but simply do not have the resources to make that happen. Share The Stoke Foundation is committed to creating new possibilities for young people globally to support them in having their dreams of surfing come true.
“Our goal is to work together with local nonprofits to expand our impact. We want to afford the global surf community an opportunity to connect with at-risk youth living in distressed areas through unique missions such as this one. We believe children deserve more than just the basics to survive-- they deserve hope and access to activities that impact their lives in a positive way.” Kelly Kinston, Founder.
Earlier this year during a Share the Stoke South Africa campaign campaign, professional surfer Michel Bourez presented selected children with an STSF Firewire surfboard, FCS fins and leash, and Sticky Bumps wax. STSF has also partnered with Surfr App to log surf sessions, highlight new surf spots and to establish the organizations STSF meets with on the app and to record their needs whether it be clean water, wetsuits or any other necessity.
Below is a sampling of ongoing projects through Share the Stoke Foundation
STSF played a vital role in the creation of the Choco Surf Club. This club immediately joined the Surfing Federation of Colombia and is a component of the kids being able to compete at surf contests. Surfing competitions have taken several boys and girls out of the community to explore the other regions for the first time in their lives. These competitive surfers have become role models as they represent their village within Colombia. In other remote villages STSF has literally introduced surfing to the entire community. Prior to the team’s arrival no one from the community had ever seen a person stand on a board and ride a wave.
JAMMIN’ IN JAMAICA
STSF has a partnership with a group of local surfers in Bull Bay. This sponsorship highlights kids in the Jamaica Junior Surfing Association. Through this association kids have an opportunity to compete and be rewarded for their behavior, attitude, academic dedication and surfing potential. In years past Share The Stoke Foundation has attended and supported the Makka Pro, a prestigious surf contest in the Western Atlantic Surf Series.
BOARDS FOR BALI
An STSF ambassador introduced our team to an amazing orphanage in the heart of Kuta, Bali. This orphanage is the home to many young kids who were abandoned by their families due to drugs and prostitution. While at the orphanage the kids attend school and rely on mentors to educate them about life and protect them from some of the harsh realities that children face in Kuta. These mentors teach the kids to surf so that they have a positive way to express themselves.
SURFING IN THE USA
Kids in the United States are exposed to drugs and alcohol at an increasingly young age. This exposure strips a child of the needed discipline and leadership to be successful throughout their adult years. A positive surfing community creates opportunities for kids to explore their greatness and uniqueness. STSF builds positive surf communities with young leaders. If you know of a young man or woman who posses leadership, discipline, responsibility and/or community please let us know.
NICARAGUA AND THE LEADERS
Nicaragua and STSF have a long history as it is the home to the first STSF international board giveaway. The foundation has a consistent formula at several beach towns in Nicaragua that includes the older boys in the community hosting surf lessons for the younger children, beach clean ups, and a surf competitions. Nicaraguan communities are always eager to incorporate lessons in loving Mother Nature and keeping the beaches clean. This is in line with one of STSF’s core values. STSF is eager to grow their sponsorship program for “Surfboard Library Systems” in Nicaragua. This is a program that supplies teachers with surfboards who use the boards as a way to keep kids engaged in their education. If the local kids stay in school and are actively involved in learning they can “check out” a high performance surfboard.
The longest left in the world (for you surfers you know what a big deal that is) has no locals surfing the break. STSF is changing that. The international surfing community has a responsibility to share Mother Nature with the individuals whose families have lived at these breaks for generations. The courageousness of kids in Chicama to dive into the cold water without wetsuits is evidence of their passion and desire to explore the gift of surfing.
STSF is eager to continue their support of an after school girls surf club. This program is designed to introduce young girls into the male dominated sport in a way that is fun and free.
Costa Rican groms are some of the most grateful kids STSF works with. Beach after beach in Costa Rica the kids are responsible for keeping their beaches clean and the positive attitude in the surf. The surf communities of Costa Rica are loaded with surf ambassadors who know it is their responsibility to keep young surfers focused on their community, their school and their family.
STSF is committed to the future surfers of Costa Rica.
COLLABORATING IN CUBA
Cuba surf is the definition of “underground”. These surfers are some of the most hardcore lovers of surf Share The Stoke Foundation works with. These communities work for every single bit of surf gear that has made its way to the island. Because of the political situation in Cuba, surf boards, wax, leashes, are simply not accessible. Cubans rely on organizations like Share The Stoke Foundation to even make surfing a possibility in their country. The passion Cubans surfers have ties their community together. Cuban surfers need our contributions or their passion will be lost.
PUTTING LOVE AND HOPE FIRST IN PANAMA
Mono Loco Surf School is the heart of Share The Stoke Foundation’s presence in Panama. Their surf school celebrates local children who embody leadership, responsibility, community and discipline. Each member of their staff works with the local youth to create the possibility for kids to positively express themselves through the gift of surfing. While Panama is their backyard they even share this love and hope throughout the rest of world. If you are in Panama stop in and say hi. Let’s get more boards in the hands of these kids.
SOUTH AFRICA & THE RECYCLED BOARD PROGRAM
Share The Stoke Foundation has partnered with several organizations called Waves For Change, 9Miles Project, The Surfer Kids, Aleph Foundation, Surfers Not Street Children, Western Province Development Surfing, Pelsrus High School and Surf Shack Outreach in South Africa. This ambassador team is at the heart of teaching life skills to kids who desperately need role models to survive. Waves For Change is a pioneering HIV education and leadership training program rooted in surfing for young adults from the townships of South Africa. Our partnership with these organizations is perfect in that we all believe that teaching leadership is pivotal for children globally. STSF provides recycled surfboards to some of the children in the programs that excel at leadership. Together we have hosted the first ever black South African Surf Contest. In 2014 we launched our skills development program. This will include how to repair boards and fin manufacturing classes. Also, in 2014, fifty Firewire surfboards were delivered and distributed to various organizations throughout South Africa. We were able to make large donations at the Mr. Price Pro and the JBay Open. Help us in this fight to educate South African groms and get them surfing.