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Waves for Hope

Waves for Hope offers a surf therapy program to at-risk youths in the rural communities of Trinidad. They provide a safe space, caring mentors, the fun activity of surfing and evidence-based exercises to build healthy relationships and develop skills to cope with stress.

Who they are

Waves for Hope offers a surf therapy program to at-risk youths in the rural communities of Trinidad. They provide a safe space, caring mentors, the fun activity of surfing and evidence-based exercises to build healthy relationships and develop skills to cope with stress.

Their surf therapy program combines evidence-based therapeutic activities with surfing. The beach functions as a safe space where the participants are mentored by caring coaches and are given the opportunity to learn new skills to cope with their difficult situations and build positive relationships.

Waves for Hope’s goal is to encourage positive life choices and create role models in their communities across Trinidad & Tobago.

Ressources

The Trinidad & Tobago Youth Project (TTYP) estimates that more than 50% of youths involved in school crime and violence are afflicted with health problems such as depression, emotional, verbal, or physical abuse, mood disorders and unresolved grief and loss.

The University of the West Indies

Our interview with them

Why do you use surfing for therapy? Does the role of surfing go beyond just a beneficial physical outlet for your participants? 

There is so much more to surfing than just surfing: the physical activity is keeping us fit. Practicing and mastering challenging tasks improve our confidence and self-esteem. And then there is the aspect of the healing properties of water, which says that being in or even just looking at water has a calming and relaxing effect on us. And finally, there is the mental side to surfing: fFlow describes a state of being completely immersed in an activity or learning experience that challenges us, for example catching a wave. And while being completely focused on one thing, our mind gets to relax and recharge. Combining all these positive properties of surfing and adding caring mentors, a safe space, and mindfulness exercises are what we call surf therapy. Working with at-risk youth living in under-served communities and being exposed to violence, abuse, and family breakdown, we found that the mix of surfing and therapeutic activities leads to an improvement of overall well-being.”


Lesson plans


Support Waves for Hope

Do you like the mission of Waves for Hope and would love to support them?

Stay informed by following them on Facebook and Instagram.
Help them provide surf therapy to children in need by donating right here.
Follow their journey by following their website or learn more by reading the interview our editor did with them.

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