Surf With Amigas is mostly about surfing, yoga, and having awesome adventures with new friends, but we also like to help out the local community. We work closely with Waves of Hope – a non-profit working to improve the lives of local community members by focusing first on education on whatever project they have going on at the time. Right now they are engaged in re-vamping the local schools and making them more comfortable for learning. We took an afternoon to help clean, sand, and paint a middle school classroom.
It’s natural to want to give back and help people. Travel experiences are so much more meaningful when you get a chance to interact with the local community and impact their lives in a positive way. When I was looking for a place to run the women’s surf and yoga retreats I wanted to partner with someone who was making a positive impact on the community. Coco Loco is the perfect place. They run a non-profit called Waves of Hope that is investing in education to teach the people how to help themselves. Those are the sorts of businesses that I want to support and you can feel good about doing the same.
For more information about Waves Of Hope, click here!
Coco Loco, Waves of Hope, and Surf With Amigas are all dedicated to improving the lives of the people in the surrounding communities. One project was the Waves of Hope Surf Club which encouraged kids to attend school everyday by offering them a Saturday Surf Club which they could only attend if their teacher signed off that they had attended class every day, turned in assignments, and were generally being good students. Through this program, kids were motivated to stay in school, but they also got a chance to learn about the ocean and learn how to surf. The only problem was that after catching your first wave, you then want your own surfboard that those are expensive and hard to come by for a poor village kid.
Other gringos in other communities have solved this problem by just giving out a bunch of boards. The problem with this strategy is that the kids then don’t appreciate the value of the boards. They also then start asking for more hand-outs. We didn’t have enough boards for all the kids and tried to come up with a way that they could earn a new board.
Enter the Coco Loco Classic – We held a contest for 11 participants on a fun day at the point. A few of them didn’t even have a surfboard to use for the competition so we let them borrow some of ours. The contest ended in a tie so we gave out two boards but everyone had a great day with a fun friendly competitive spirit.
Watch the video below:
I believe in Karma. Good deeds are rewarded. Positive vibes multiply. Giving back to a community is rewarded with big smiles and good waves. This week seemed to prove all those points. Ten friends spent a morning painting a new local school and then scored an amazing week of awesome waves. Click Play above to see how it all went down.
A group of 17 high school kids from High Tech High in San Diego came down to Nicaragua with Suave Dulce for the trip of a lifetime. They learned to surf, did yoga, went horseback riding on the beach, and boarded down an active volcano. They learned to make tortillas and jewelry while interacting with the local community.
All that was fun and exciting, but the real reason for their trip was to give back by helping to build a new classroom for 4th, 5th, and 6 graders. They painted, dug trenches, and learned to mix cement.
Imagine you’re a 12 year old kid growing up in a remote fishing village in Northern Nicaragua. You’ve spent most of your life barefoot, chasing chickens and skinny dogs through barbed-wire fences. You learned to ride a horse at age 5 and by age 7 your dad had you herding cattle between pen and pasture. Your parents keep you busy with the chores of survival. There’s a two room school house just down the street but not much incentive to attend so you don’t know how to read.
Then one day, some gringos show up and buy land nearby. They give your uncles jobs in construction building a small eco-resort called El Coco Loco. Your mom gets hired to help out in the kitchen and your older brother scores a job as a night watchman.
Coco Loco founds a community development focused non-profit called Waves of Hope to improve the lives of the community they’ve fallen in love with. Volunteers come down from the US and Canada, girls with big smiles that spend mornings in the little school helping the one teacher that is assigned to teach three grades at once. In the afternoons they organize soccer games on the Coco Loco field, do art projects, and teach English. On Saturdays any kid that has attended classes Monday – Friday gets to borrow a surfboard and feel the joy of riding a wave.
Suddenly, there’s a lot of incentive to go to school. Attendance skyrockets. The tiny two room school house is no longer big enough.
Then Waves Of Hope announces that it will build a new school room for 4th, 5th, and 6th graders. But we need your help!
The new classroom will cost $9,000 to build. You can help by donating to Waves of Hope. Every little bit helps.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com for more info on how you can make a difference and help kids go to school!
Imagine this for your winter break in High School – two awesome teachers take you and 16 of your friends down to Northern Nicaragua for an incredible week of surfing, yoga, horseback riding, volcano boarding, and helping the community by building a new school room for local 4th, 5th, and 6th graders. Sound too good to be true? Not if you’re one of these kids…
Two teachers from the public charter school High Tech High in San Diego did exactly that. 17 Freshman and Sophmores came down to Suave Dulce for 10 days of eye-opening adventure.
A few knew how to surf already like Jake Stutz (shown above ripping and painting), who was busting airs and trying to improve his cutback, but most were learning to stand up for the first time.
Lizzie and Sierra fell in love with riding horses on the beach and after asking very nicely, got to do it twice! Maya made a heart-shaped corn tortilla, Nico represented the boys at yoga, and Jadon and Zeek showed off their upper thighs by stealing the girls’ short shorts. Apparently, that’s the new skater style these days, along with calling everyone “daddy”.
Aside from the silliness and adventure, the kids made serious progress on the new school room. They shoveled rocks, learned to mix cement, did some painting, and dug a massive trench that will bring drinking water to future students. There were a few impressive blisters and everyone went home with a new appreciation for construction workers.
Check out the videos below for more…
Waves of Hope is the non-profit started by El Coco Loco to improve the lives of the local community members. One project is an afternoon kids’ club that serves to build confidence, teamwork, and other valuable social skills. This day the kids were introduced to a new experience – the slip and slide.
Waves of Hope is a community-focused non-profit working to improve the lives of the people of Northern Nicaragua. After noticing that very few kids were attending school regularly they came up with a program to reward attendance. If a kid went to school every day of the week, on saturday he or she could go surfing! School attendance has improved dramatically!
Nicaragua is the second poorest nation in Latin America but while the people are poor they are very friendly. While driving by, kids smile and wave. A little help goes a long way. Suave Dulce has partnered with Waves of Hope, the non-profit arm of El Coco Loco to give retreat guests a chance to interact with the local community and give back in a meaningful way.