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We’ve been taught to fear countries in the Middle East, including Iran, since our youth. We’ve been fed opinions and facts about these places by the media and politicians. We’ve heard about war in these zones, even lost brothers & sisters because of it, and supposedly, we were not the one to blame—they were. They always were. We sat, we listened and we believed.
When I first heard about surfing in Iran, I was instantly in awe … could it truly be possible? A ton of questions immediately followed the discovery. Who could possibly go to Iran, a country located between Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iraq, to surf?
In the hope of changing outdated perception about Iran and its people, three surfers from Switzerland decided to document their journey in this part of the world while teaching local people how to shape. Damien Epiney, Tim Cachot and Naomi Gallay, all avid surfers and founders of Atelier Baumes, a shaping company in Switzerland, prepared their surf gear and their mind to finally head to Iran last September.
Accompanied by We Ride in Iran, an organization that teaches locals how to surf and how to shape while educating them about marine life and security safety, they went to Ramin, a small village in the Central District of Chabahar, in the Sistan and Baluchestan Province.
What stood out the most about their documentary, Berim, was not only the fact that it was incredible to witness how passionate the local people were about surfing and how eager they were to learn, but the goal of the founders behind it all. Doing this documentary wasn’t about showing off their adventures or making money off it, no, they did this film because they wanted to show how beautiful Iran and its people are. Their purpose had real value; something that we aren’t used to seeing anymore.
With the help of local surfer Abed Fuladi, they are hoping to see surfing become more accessible in this part of Iran by teaching lessons, renting materials and offering places to stay. The main goal of their documentary as well as their journey in Iran was to highlight a growing surf community that is worth being under the spotlight; where the chase of a wave isn’t about the size of it, but about how it makes you feel.
If Berim hasn’t played in a place near you, make sure to keep your eyes peeled for the release of it online and if you can’t wait, reach out to Atelier Baumes to know more about it.
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