Our 6-months surf therapy pilot project turned into 11 months. Reason for it is that we had to reduce group size and at times completely stopp the programme due to Covid 19 and lockdown restrictions.
We had a nice graduation celebration planned. The second nationwide lockdown made it impossible to meet in larger groups and we had to re-model our graduation plans.
If Covid has been teaching us something, it surely is being flexible and adapting to new situations on a weekly basis!
We decided to visit our participants in their homes and hand them their certificate, a backpack filled with goodies and some pastries to celebrate with their families. So instead of a big celebration, we had many small celebrations.
What now? All our participants graduate into our Waves for Hope Club, where they will continue their surfing journey but where they'll also have access to a number of other activities, such as life-skills, music and art workshops, mentor talks and a home work center.
And we are ready to start our new cycle with a new cohort of 24 young people! We're very excited and happy to be able to continue to offer surf therapy to more and more children and youth on the east-coast of Trinidad.
Our goal with surf therapy is to help kids and youths in Trinidad develop skills to cope with stress and trauma, and help them develop positive self identities. Our surf therapy program provides young people with the opportunity to practice new behaviours and coping skills that can improve the way they deal with the impact of stress.
We know we cannot change the situation that the children live in, but we can give
them the tools to cope more effectively with the challenges they face every day.