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Waves For Water

We love water, whether we are in it, on it, observing it or ingesting it.

As surfers, the interaction between our bodies, surfboards, and the wave is something we live for. However, as human beings, water is more than just something we enjoy playing in, but a critical part of everyday living.  Unfortunately, access to clean water is a luxury often taken for granted.

Recognizing this reality, Waves for Water (W4W) decided to take action. W4W is a humanitarian, non-profit organization that helps provide communities around the world with clean water via portable filters. The idea is to make clean water available to those in need through an exponential community effort rather than a one-time mass donation.  With this mindset, W4W has partnered with Hurley International to create a DIY volunteer program called Clean Water Couriers (CWC).

CWC provides a platform for globetrotters from different backgrounds and interests to give back to the various communities they encounter by distributing water filters. This opportunity was one that STN could not pass up, and has now become an official Clean Water Courier through W4W.

Adding to their ingenuity, filters are very simple to manufacture and transport. All that is required are paint buckets, a knife or any tool to make holes, and the spigots and ceramic-drip filters that W4W produce. STN had a first-hand experience with the filters on its last outreach trip to Bangladesh. “We set up the filter in a school from a poor area,” said Zach Trein, International Outreach staff member. “Taking the water filters to Bangladesh for a trial run went amazing, so we’d love to bring them on all our international trips.” 

Next up for STN’s international outreach trips is North Korea (Check out our recent post about the trip: http://surfingthenations.com/from-north-shore-to-north-korea-2/, and the video of when W4W went to North Korea: http://www.wavesforwater.org/project/north-korea). W4W introduced the filters to North Korea in October 2012 and will partner with STN this month to bring even more filters. A single filter costs $25-50 and can provide approximately 100 people with clean water for up to five years. At STN, our long-term goal is to raise $5,000 for 100 filters in order to bring several on each of our trips. That could mean clean water for over 10,000 people around the world. 

Part of what connects humanity despite differences in interests, backgrounds, communication styles, etc, are our basic human needs. Not everyone surfs, but everyone needs clean water to drink. Help us reach across barriers and show love, in North Korea and around the world, through alleviating the need for the most basic element of life.

If you are interested in helping to create clean water waves through our International Outreaches, donate here through the W4W website: http://www.wavesforwater.org/courier/surfing-the-nations-impacts-local-and-international-communities-through-the-sport-of-surfing-selfless-service-by-meeting-needs-and-changing-lives

Learn more at: http://www.wavesforwater.org

Written By: Akela Newman

From North Shore to North Korea

There are very few unexplored frontiers remaining in the world of surfing! These territories remain un-surfed primarily because of their remote and geographically hazardous locations such as Antarctica, West Africa and Eastern Russia. However, there is one country with a much more accessible location, having approximately 1,550 miles of coastline that have yet to be explored via surfboard – North Korea.

In 2003, STN was the forerunner of surfing and surf culture in Bangladesh. This year, we have a similar opportunity to pioneer the sport in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (a.k.a. North Korea) through an invitation to host two surf camps…which we, of course, could not pass up.

At the end of July, our team of 19 STN members from around the world (including countries such as Sweden, Switzerland, Denmark, Australia and the USA) will be working in conjunction with Pyongyang Ocean Sports Club and other non-profit humanitarian organizations who foster community development and relief work. The surf camps will be held on the east coast of North Korea in the East China Sea, a region of water surrounding North Korea previously inaccessible. Now, however, we have been given the opportunity to enjoy the waves at STN’s surf camps: one at Shijung beach and the other at either Wonsan Bay or Majung.

Google satellite images show potential for epic (and completely empty) surf spots, revealing sneak-peeks at sandy-bottomed beach breaks and point breaks striped with an endlessly rolling lineup. In addition to taking a traditional tour of the capital city, Pyongyang, the team will spend the majority of the two week trip ‘giving back’ by sharing their passion for the sport of surfing. STN will also be bringing surfboards, wetsuits, and other surf gear to give to the “new” North Korean surfers to keep up their stoke for surfing after our team departs. Along with establishing a long-term surf community, we are hoping this trip will build a bridge between STN and the people of North Korea and allow us to return annually in the future.

 

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Be part of this trip! Send your support of surf gear or finances, email go@surfingthenations.com or visit surfingthenations.com/donate.

Photo Credit: http://www.arcticsurfblog.com/2012/07/surf-guide-to-north-korea/ 

Written By: Akela Newman

Bye Bye, Brothel!

The month of May was history-in-the-making for Surfing The Nations as we took another big step towards Transformation Wahiawa! The much-anticipated demolition of an old brothel in the back of our property has finally come to pass. After years of being used as a house for illegal drug dealing and sex-trafficking, the plot of land has been flattened in order to rebuild a community center in its place.  The “Outreach Training Center” (OTC), as it will be called, will include a food pantry, art & music rooms for our Ulu Pono Kids program as well as permanent offices for our staff.

 

As exciting as this is, we still need your help! As grants trickle in and needs continue to grow, we ask that you consider partnering with us as we continue to take steps towards making this block a better place for the youth of Wahiawa to grow up.

 

 

 

INDO 2014

It’s hard to believe that 2014 marks Surfing The Nations’ SEVENTEENTH trip to Indonesia!

In 1997, STN founder Tom Bauer pioneered the organization’s first surfing adventure tour to this country of over 10,000 islands. On the brink of a new era of surfing about to flood Indonesia, he committed to go back every summer for the next ten years. Little did he know, that ‘ten’ would later turn into a ‘twenty.’

Now, 17 years later, he is back once again with a fresh team of 21, ready to introduce them to all of the reasons why he is full of stoke for Indo. The team landed in Denpasar, Bali on the 30th of June and have already made their way through the beautiful chaos of Kuta, the picture-perfect bungalows of Bingin and the remote fishing villages of Lombok. Stopping at world-class surf breaks along the way, including Impossibles, Padang-Padang, Uluwatu, Desert Point (ranked 3rd best wave in the world) and Scar Reef, the team is now making their way through the Indian Ocean via a large outrigger boat and continuing on to Gili Island and Nusa Lembongan.

All the amazing once-in-a-lifetime sites aside, why do we continue to return to Indo? The answer is simple – relationships. Each member of every Indonesia team is encouraged to live out the trip’s catchphrase, “make a friend for life.” The friendships we make are founded on long-term mindsets and built with short-term goals. Our heart is to show the people we meet that we care and are committed to seeing them thrive not only during the few short weeks we are in Indonesia, but for life!

 

Check out these Instagram posts from the trip so far!

 

Photo Credit:

@karedon

@madisontyrell

@emcoast

 

Surfers Coffee Bar Is Going Big!

Surfers Coffee Bar Is Going Big!

 /// MAKEOVER

Surfers Coffee Bar is now in its 4th year running and is thriving due to it’s recent makeover. Thank you to everyone who helped in the renovation of SCB and thank you to all our loyal customers for your patience and for supporting SCB through the transition. Since the renovations, SCB has had their most successful quarter ever and attribute it in large part to their increasingly famous Acai Bowls.

/// RECOGNITION
We are thrilled at how SCB is thriving. We are becoming better and better known for the quality of our caffeine as well as the humanitarian heartbeat behind it. In May, SCB crew participated in the First Annual Hawaii Coffee Festival where barista, Katie, won second place in the Brewer’s Competition. SCB was also given a booth at Turtle Bay Resort’s Independence Day celebration where they served coffee and promoted STN to participants in the festivities.

/// WHAT’S AHEAD

SCB is stepping it up in their retail department and working on some new t-shirt designs. We hope to increase SCB’s coolness factor (literally and figuratively) by installing a few air conditioning units sometime in the following months. The traditional Wednesday night Open Mic events are also getting kickstarted back into action.

 

 

Keep up with Surfers Coffee Bar at:

Surferscoffee.com

~and~

Instagram @surferscoffeebar

Written by: Akela Newman

8 Instagrams Accounts That Will Persuade You to Visit Hawaii [Or explore it further]

While it is no longer a secret that Instagram may be one of the biggest blessings (and curses) of this generation, we thought we would take a moment and help channel the daily flood of photos to just eight of our favorite Instagram accounts.  Here’s to hoping that these photos may inspire you to get off your phone (or computer in this case) and go on an adventure - specifically in our beloved backyard, Hawaii!

 P.s. Follow us on Instagram @surfingthenations 

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1. @ThreeIfBySea

Two brothers, Nainoa and Makana, capturing their exploration of their Hawaii Nei through the air, on land and in the sea.

2. @MattBruening

Designer and adventurer. A Hawaii local capturing the beauty of his surroundings and friends.

 

3. @ClarkLittle

The man who made the unique beauty of shore-breaking waves and the fantasy of Hawaii visually accessible to the ravenous masses.

 

 

4. @hawaiistagram

An account that boasts “the best photos of Hawaii”. They repost, give shout-outs and promote the beauty of the Islands through the camera lenses of its people.

 

5. @FreeSurfMag

Hawaii’s Oahu-based, no-cost surf magazine connecting local surfers with local stories, local businesses and local events.

6. @BrooklynHawaii

A young fashion designer and lifestyle trend-setter living on the North Shore of Oahu and living “a life that demands an explanation”.


7. @MikeCoots

Shark attack survivor, surfer, environmentalist and photographer.

8. @EricSterman

Aerial photographer based on the North Shore of Oahu. Check out the amazing videos on his vimeo account as well https://vimeo.com/94588380

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(Written by: Akela Newman)

Stumptown Brings SCB To The Next Level

The Surfers Coffee Bar got an extra jolt last Friday morning with a visit from Stumptown’s very own David George.  This seven-year veteran with Stumptown Coffee Roasters took the five hour flight from Portland to Wahiawa to up the expertise of the already “Top 10 Coffee Shops in Hawaii” placeholder.

SCB Barsita, Karen Domingo was thrilled to have the opportunity, and recognizes the benefits it will have on Surfers Coffe Bar:  ”"In general, I think it was important that all of our baristas were trained together. Not only do we know we’re on the same page, but we’re all following the same high standards. David is a good teacher- he taught us important barista basics- from from pulling a great shot if espresso, to steaming milk, making latte art, brewing a simple pourover, and properly caring for our machines. He even explained more about Stumptown as a company. Since we are a non-profit, it was key for us to know the good work behind Stumptown’s good coffee. They know their farmers and give them fair wages directly, which in turn has given the farmer’s communities a better quality of life (education, medical support, proper housing). When we use our motto “more than a cup of coffee” we know that we’re not just helping our home community, but we’re supporting other communities worldwide.

We invite you to come in and take a seat as we warm up your mornings with a perfectly poured Americano.  The Surfer’s Coffee Bar is stoked to serve StumpTown Coffee Roasters with excellence by our trained full time volunteer staff. Whether or not you’re the coffee connoisseur that can identify the origin, aroma and taste of the pulled shot of coffee in your cup; or you’re the simple kind that just needs a cup of joe and a bagel to go, The Surfers Coffee Bar is ready to serve you!   Mahalo to Stumptown Coffee Roasters for helping us bring Wahiawa a better cup of coffee!

 

   

Surfing The Nations collaboration with Stoked On Life!

For the next ten days, Surfing The Nations is collaborating with SOL (Stoked On Life) to bring you some limited edition “Surfers Giving Back” apparel and promote the idea of using your talents and passions to make a positive impact!

100% of the sale proceeds go to Surfing The Nations along with all of the merchandise on SOL’s website (solsunglasses.com) for the next ten days.  Visit teespring.com/surfersgivingback  to check out the limited edition t-shirt, tank and hoodie!

We Went To Turkey!

In the end of 2013, STN went on their first ‘pioneer’ trip to Turkey. Today, staff member Gisele Pitot shares a little about the trip:

“When I think of a pioneer I picture a David Livingstone-esque character: grizzly and sweaty, hacking through the jungle with a machete while mosquitos feast on him. I picture safari hats and lot of khaki. But on an STN pioneer trip, things look a little different (although we still had some grizzly men!). Skateboards, stickers, cameras, GPS signals and the odd map were our tools in our very first trip to the Eurasian country of Turkey.

We left the American turkeys behind us as we flew out of Hawaii on Thanksgiving Day last year, setting off on a 25-day adventure to this foreign land. Our crew of 11 came from as far as Australia, South Africa, Sweden, Hawaii, North Carolina and Canada but we all had the same question in common – is Turkey a place where the message of “Surfers Giving Back” can thrive? And besides the lack of waves (this is where the skating came in) the answer was a resounding ‘yes’!

There are only 25 surfers in the entire country of Turkey. The surf community is slowly growing and their enthusiasm for surfing cannot be matched. In places where the surf industry is already  booming, there are also negative habits and lifestyles that often follow. Yet, Turkey remians untouched by the dark sides of surf culture. The surfing lifestyle there is healthy and positive. When the waves weren’t good, we grabbed skateboards and spent time hanging out with locals, skating any ramp or street we could. The friends we made were not only passionate about board riding but also about using their passion of surfing to bring unity and positive change in their communities.

From the epic history of Istanbul and Ephesus, the beautiful relationships built with the surfers of the Black Sea and the Danube Surf Academy, all the way down to the sunny southern Mediterranean city of Alanya, this was a trip to remember. We are stoked to return to Turkey and give back through surfing in 2014!” -GP

Here are a few photos from the trip. View the entire set on our Flickr!

 

Kauai native, Aquila David having some fun!

Surfing the Black Sea

Aquila shredding

Ephesus

Lovisa and Hanna get ready for the cold water!

Surfing Alanya

The view from Danube Surf House

Shopping and meeting the locals!

Outside of the Hagia Sophia

Inside the Hagia Sophia

Passing on the skating stoke

Flying

STN Named Outstanding Advocate For Children And Youth

Yesterday, Surfing The Nations was honored to be named as an Outstanding Advocate For Children and Youth in the state of Hawaii. Governor Neil Abercrombie and Hawaii State Representatives honored several other individuals and organizations as a part of Children and Youth Day, and Children and Youth Month.

We are humbled and stoked to be a part of bringing hope to the next generation of Hawaii!