Waves of Impact is bringing a FREE Surf Camp for Children with Autism
Waves of Impact is organizing a free surf camp for children with special challenges. The nonprofit organization is teaming up with a cadre of local volunteers to make the event happen. The kids are teamed up with a group of surfers who ride the waves with them. Other volunteers stay in the shallows to catch any lost boards and assist the children in and out of the water.
The joy the children get from being in the ocean helps calm the sensory overload many routinely experience. Approximately 1 in 88 Americans are in the Autism Spectrum.
Parents of children with autism have limited opportunities for their children to participate in recreational sports. This event gives their children a chance to surf and be in the ocean, like any other kid. They get to ride surf boards, boogie boards, stand up paddleboards, build sand castles, and everything else kids do at the beach. Approximately 60 families will be participating. Lunch is provided so the families get to enjoy their beach day too.
“Watching these kids ride waves for the first time is a joy to see,” said Keith Lovgren, one of the organizers.” At first some seem a bit scared, like many people would be, but our incredible staff of volunteers works hard to make the kids feel comfortable and relaxed. The faces are serious and determined but when they catch the wave, man, it’s like watching a flower unfurl. I’ll never forget those smiles.”
The group will be on Galveston Beach on May 10th from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 pm.
Galveston Island based Ohana Surf & Skate and Director Josh Harper, of newly formed Waves of Impact, are offering a FREE surf experience for children with Autism and other Special Needs. Waves of Impact was formed to provide a therapeutic surfing experience for children and adults with Autism, Cancer patients, wounded War Veterans and for those with a variety of other special needs that may limit their ability to otherwise embark on such an opportunity. Surfing has provided long time health benefits physically and mentally to people for years, and now Waves of Impact is pleased to bring this experience to those with Autism on their first stop in Galveston, Texas. Individuals with Autism are keenly receptive to the rhythmic nature of the surfing experience due to their sensory issues. Our surf day will help build confidence and self-esteem in these kids that they can take away for life. Space is limited and RSVP is required for this FREE Surf Experience. “On top of everything we are trying to accomplish these days, we really want families to take away from the day that they can come back to the beach and have fun for almost free,’’ says event director Josh Harper.
Also, at each event open water certified Ohana Surf Instructors, the Galveston Beach Patrol, and Billabong representatives will be in the water with the kids. On land, there is a beach full of volunteers and behavioral therapists who will be assisting 60 pre-registered surf students with Autism along with their families for a day of fun and sun in the surf. Spokesperson Josh Harper, from Waves of Impact, and Billabong USA, will be on hand to discuss the Galveston event bringing attention to Autism and how surfing is a great health benefit to everyone.
For more information contact:
Josh Harper, Director
Waves of Impact