Since 2018 Welcome Wave has shared our ocean and the unique joy of surfing with disadvantaged children living in Direct Provision Centres in Cork City and Clonakilty. We have brought over 30 children between the ages of eight and eighteen, for four surf therapy sessions each September to Inchydoney Beach in West Cork. This project is a collaborative between Sara and Sam Hunt, who are motivated in remembrance of their daughter Zoey, and Like Water, a social change initiative founded by surfer-scientist Dr. Easkey Britton one of Ireland's most accomplished surfers.
The Irish Refugee Council recently reported that there are circa 2,000 children living in Direct Provision in Ireland. Some of these children were born here in Ireland and have lived in Direct Provision for their whole lives. They face a number of challenges due to their circumstances including lack of access to a natural environment, overcrowding, lack of play spaces, exclusion etc.
Sara and Sam have a love for surfing and the ocean, it is what brought them together and makes them happy. They sadly lost their daughter Zoey, after a few days of life, in March 2018. They wish to celebrate her short life through enabling other children, who also face very hard challenges, to discover and enjoy our beautiful ocean and the thrill of catching their first wave. With the help of Dr. Easkey and Like Water, the surf therapy experience will include a structured approach to maximize the therapeutic benefit for the children. Surf therapy has proven benefits for health, especially psycholgical wellbeing and social connection. And it is very FUN.
All funds raised since the start of the project are recorded on this GoFundme Page. So far we have run two month long sessions each September and with your help we hope to continue this. If funds allow we could extend this programme beyond Cork.
The following is the breakdown of costs for the 4 week session that we ran in September 2018.
Cost Breakdown for 4 Week Session
- 4 Surf lessons for 24 children @ €20 euro = €1,920
- 1 Bus to collect the children from 2 locations @ €350 per day = €1,400
- Lunch for 24 children and 24 volunteers @ €15 = €720
We are so grateful for your donation. You are extending a welcoming hand to those who have come to our shores and really do need our help in whatever small way you can manage. This project has been hugely successful and has benefited so many children and volunteers alike. For Sara and Sam, this project helps to celebrate Zoey’s life in a positive way. For Easkey this project is a special way to share the healing power of the ocean to connect.
Please check out our video linked at the top of the page showing the enjoyment and healing benefits the children have experienced during this program.
Image Credit: Braedon Ryan
- GoFundMe Team
- Kieran Moylan
- Ruth Young
- Shauna Gillan
Fundraising team: Sara and Sam Hunt (3)
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