Smiles, Surf and Sun Prescribed to Kiwi Kids

Zane Schweitzer from Hawaii and the Payne brothers. Image: The Ultimate Waterman

Smiles, surf and sun were prescribed to kiwi kids with Cystic Fibrosis today as The Ultimate Waterman kicked off its official events at Orewa Beach, Auckland.

All eight international watermen who are here to compete in the multi-discipline surf competition took part in the one-on-one sessions with the kids aged between five and sixteen years old. It was the very first Mauli Ola Foundation surf experience in New Zealand and an opportunity for the kids to meet these amazing athletes, have some fun and forget about their illness even for just a few hours.

Mauli Ola, which means “breath of life”, is dedicated to providing hope and confidence to individuals living with genetic diseases. Since 2007 the foundation has run over 150 surf experiences for children with Cystic Fibrosis as a natural therapy.

Mauli Ola Vice President and The Ultimate Waterman competitor Kala Alexander of Hawaii says it is a huge honour and privilege to bring Mauli Ola to Aotearoa.

Mauli Ola Vice President Kala Alexander and Oli Bradley (five years). Image: The Ultimate Waterman
Mauli Ola Vice President Kala Alexander and Oli Bradley (five years). Image: The Ultimate Waterman

“Seeing the smiles and stoke for surfing from these young kids is amazing. To start the event off with a day like this giving back to the youth and sport of surfing is perfect,” says Kala.

Cystic Fibrosis patients have been found to benefit from surfing as the salt water can loosen up the mucus in the lungs.

The Ultimate Waterman competition starts on Saturday at Takapuna Beach, Auckland with the 16km Outrigger Canoe endurance race. Seven other disciplines will unfold throughout the country over the course of the next eight days, with the winner being decided on Sunday 20th March at the Auckland Viaduct.

The athletes who are poised to take part in this multi-discipline surf event for 2016 are: Connor Baxter (HAW), Mark Visser (AUS), Kala Alexander (HAW), Danny Ching (USA), Manoa Drollet (PYF), 2015 winner Daniel Kereopa (NZL), Caio Vaz (BRA) and Zane Schweitzer (HAW).

Daniel Kereopa with sisters Kelea and Abby Wendelborn. Image: The Ultimate Waterman
Daniel Kereopa with sisters Kelea and Abby Wendelborn. Image: The Ultimate Waterman

An official Maori welcome to New Zealand will take place tomorrow at Okahu Bay at Orakei, Auckland where the athletes will paddle out on a traditional Maori war canoe.

Source: The Ultimate Waterman

Mark “Occy” Occhilupo Joins Surfing Chefs for SURFAID

Image: Joli

Former world surfing champion Mark “Occy” Occhilupo is stoked to be joining some of Australia’s top chefs for the Surfing Chefs for SurfAid cocktail party at The Bucket List, Bondi on Wednesday 9 March 2016.

The event, which raises funds for award-winning humanitarian aid organisation, SurfAid, promises to be an amazing evening of gourmet food and fine wine prepared by Tom Walton, THE BUCKET LIST, BONDI, and Russell Blaikie, MUST WINEBAR, PERTH, and their team of award-winning celebrity chefs, who share a common passion for surfing.

The Surfing Chefs, who all donate their time and talent, will serve up an exquisite multi-course degustation menu sourced from the finest produce, all donated by local suppliers. Food will be paired with superb wines from Stella Bella, Vranken Pommery, and Bunkers.

The lineup includes Mark Occhilupo (1999 WORLD SURFING CHAMPION), Rod Kerr (BONDI RESCUE), Tom Walton (THE BUCKET LIST), Russell Blaikie (MUST WINEBAR, PERTH), Ben O’Donoghue (BILLYKART KITCHEN, BRISBANE), Massimo Mele (CATERING BY MASSIMO MELE), Ian Oakes (DRAKE EATERY), Stephen Scott (CHARING CROSS HOTEL), Gianluca Donzelli (PIZZAPERTA, THE STAR), Logan Campbell (JONAH’S), Matthew Butcher (MORRIS JONES, MELBOURNE). The event will be hosted by popular TV personality Mark Beretta.

6:30 pm, Wednesday 9 March 2016
The Bucket List, Queen Elizabeth Drive, Bondi Pavilion, Bondi

VIP $250 p/p (full table service)
Cocktail $150 p/p (stand up format)


Best beach cocktail

Occy, a long-time supporter of SurfAid, will join the team in the kitchen for the first time this year. He said, “I’m honoured to be involved in such a fantastic night with such fantastic chefs for such a fantastic cause. I’ve been told I’m following in the footsteps of Tom Carroll and Pottz, and that makes me feel not as nervous cause I know their footsteps are small. I hope you all like vegemite on toast….”

For the second year in a row, former pro surfer and Bondi Rescue legend, Rod Kerr will be swapping his boardies for a chef jacket and joining the team as one of our guest surfing chefs. He had this to say about the event, “I’m proud to be involved with the Surfing Chefs for SurfAid event at The Bucket List again this year. Last year was amazing. I was so nervous, but we pulled it off. SurfAid is such an amazing cause and I’m going to do better this time around. I may even cook, so watch out!”

Thank you to our major sponsors – Wilson Parking, The Bucket List, Adina Apartments Bondi Beach, and BWM Dentsu.


Make a Difference with SURFAID

The first time SurfAid Founder, Dr. Dave Jenkins, visited the Mentawai Islands, all he had in mind was scoring epic surf. What he found changed his life, and the lives of thousands of others. Sixteen years later, thanks to the help of people like you, SurfAid is recognized internationally as the leading surf-related humanitarian aid organization.

Our Mother and Child Health program, which serves a population of 12,000 in Nias, has proven results in reducing infant and maternal mortality rates. In 2012, before SurfAid’s intervention, 8 out of 150 mothers died in childbirth. Today we have reduced that number to ZERO. During the same timeframe, there were 22 deaths of children under the age of 5. That number has been reduced to 5.

This would not be possible without your support. Won’t you please make a donation to help us bring our program to even more women and children?

Many communities have seen the success of their neighbors, and are now inspired to work with the SurfAid approach to improve their own health. Our goal for 2016 is to expand our program from 19,000 participants, to approximately 55,000 throughout all of our regions. Our model of assistance focuses on empowering and supporting local communities. One of our program participants, Sri, would like for us to share her story of how this approach helped her and her community.

Sri lives in Kuta village in Parado; a small village in the south of Sumbawa Island. Just like any mother, Sri wants her family to be healthy. Fearful of the constant illnesses that plague her village, she found herself visiting the local community health center. She met other women who shared her concerns and have a common goal of improving their community. Her visits to the health center became more frequent, and she began to share what she was learning with family and friends. Empowered by her newfound knowledge, she signed up to become a clinic volunteer.

Read more from the source SURFAID. Click here to donate!

Why 4-time ASP World Champ Lisa Andersen supports SurfAid

Lisa Andersen

I go to the Mentawai Islands every four to five years and you get to see these most amazing people who live in the villages that need our help.

I’ve seen so much progression since the last time I’ve been there. Maybe some day we’ll have surfers coming from the islands and they will be future world champions.


The impact of SURFAID donations

A happy Ibu Genaria Draha and a healthy Olianus Telaumbanua. Image: SURFAID

Your generous support saves lives. We are happy to share with you just one example of the powerful impact of your donations. Nurita is a SurfAid staff member based in Nias who specializes in mother and child health. She asked us to tell you this story:

Ibu Genaria Draha lives in Mazingo Tanoseo, a hamlet of Hiliduho, on the island of Nias. Tragically, she lost her first child, aged one and a half, in March 2012 after two days of suffering from fever, vomiting and breathing problems.

In January last year, Genaria Draha gave birth to her second child, Olianus Telaumbanua, assisted by village midwives. The midwives put her baby on her chest right after she gave birth and they strongly suggested that she exclusively breastfeed until six months, and also go to Posyandu every month to monitor her baby’s growth and wellbeing. Her husband, who had learnt about the benefits of breastfeeding at Posyandu and by attending a film session in his village, also encouraged her. Since then, she has been attending Posyandu.

“I want to give the best to my child.” – Ibu Genaria Draha

Genaria Draha’s did not breastfeed her first child; instead she gave canned milk right from birth and spent most of her day in the farming area. At that time, neither she nor her husband knew much about infant nutrition and the benefits of breastfeeding.

She started breastfeeding her boy in the morning until he was full and before she left for the farming area. After collecting rubber from 10 trees, she came home to breastfeed again and then returned to work. Genaria Draha repeated this pattern after every 10 trees. Her husband, and other family members, looked after the baby when she was not there.

Genaria Draha also asked the Posyandu volunteers and midwives what she should do for good supplementary food for her baby boy and how to cook it. She feels that her success at breastfeeding and her healthy baby are very much related to good communication with her husband, family members at home, midwives and volunteers at Posyandu. “I want to give the best to my child,” she said.

Read more on the SURFAID website