How we came about...
We are a group of highly motivated professionals, among us; teachers, writers and youth workers, with a shared passion for the ocean what it means to protect it and the art of surfing here in the UK. We have worked with young people across London for a decade and want to share with them the healing and nurturing power of learning about and surfing the ocean, as we do.
1 in 5 kids in the UK have never seen the sea. This, along with mental health problems in 7 - 12 year olds being at an all time high with the government providing few solutions. Knife crimes and gang fights are still common in areas of London and regularly appearing in our newspapers. A solution is not offered. This has become normal for some young people growing up - they have no other choices are bored and it needs to be shown that there is something else...something worth living for.
Remember the first time you jumped onto your board, paddled out, saw that line heading towards you...
We go into schools and promote ocean literacy and surfing as a lifestyle choice. A chance to change your life for the better.
THIS IS NOT A ONE OFF FREE TRIP.
The program is applied for and the referred children join into a group of trainee 'Urban Oceaneers'. They learn to swim against elements, learn basic beach safety and life saving skills. They prove themselves as conservationists, plan and deliver a speech on an environmental topic about the ocean before 'qualifying' to train as a surfer!
They are mentored through every stage and the support of their families is vital for the program to work fully. Lots of work goes into this, they will learn determination and hard work can be rewarding.
The group achieve all their targets and are awarded the trip to Devon or Cornwall (depending on conditions) to join the lifestyle of a UK conservationist and surfer. We stay in youth hostels, visit a surf school for two days, eat round the camp fire and share stories of the waves, just like we do when we go surfing with our mates to heal our over stimulated minds from the modern world. The group are awarded life-long status as 'Urban Oceaneers' and promise to stay true to this life and always help to promote and care for our ocean while safely helping others to enjoy surfing as they did.
The 'Urban Oceaneers' continue to join us on further trips and training sessions as advocates of the program and we grow.
Word spreads...it starts. BE PART OF IT.