Saturday, February 5, 2011
"DANE KEALOHA" Surf Legend Gives Back To The Community - "Surf 2 Serve"
I was invited to cover a wonderful community event this morning at Ala Moana Bowls, and had the opportunity to meet the Ambassador of Hawaii's Surf, Dane Kealoha. He grew up in Waikiki and learned the art of surfing, and was one of the most popular surfers in the early 80's. At the age of 16, Dane took the Junior Men's State Championship and went on to become the world AM Champion in South Africa. At age 18, he was called the Niijima Pro. Niijima is part of the Izu island chain in Japan and is known for its surfing. For more on Dane Kealoha "click here"
Janet Grace (photo bottom right) from One Love Ministries was instrumental in coordinating today's event along with Mr. Kapua Tani of H5 (Hawaii Helping the Hungry Have Hope). Janet explainedthat they want to collaborate with the homeless shelter over at H-5 and give these kids the same opportunities that others kids have, and through the surf ministry outreach to bring them all together and let them know we care about them. "We want to take away the stigma of homelessness and just embrace them and love them". We are willing to go the long haul with them and we will never give up on them. We also want to help and teach them life skills, and make them feel that people truly need and love them."
Dane Kealoha really has a passion to give back to the community. Since his special gift and talent is surfing, he wanted to provide a venue for these kids to come down, get into the water with him, and at the same time have fun. All the kids from the shelter were invited and Dane was able to interact with them. Who knows, we may have another great surfer from Hawaii in the making, but the bottom line is that they have fun as one big Ohana. The kids were even provided with morning meals and lunch. The day started with Dane teaching them the basic surfing skills, body positions and safety. All this was on land so the kids could experience the feeling of being on a surfboard. Once Dane felt they were ready, off they went into the water with several other surf instructors following behind. I am sure it was an experience the kids will never forget. It was shaky at the start for some, but it was a blast seeing them look like they had one beer too many. I still remember my first wipe out in the 60's. I spoke to some of the kids after they returned exhausted and they loved it. You had to be there to see the joy, happiness and love these kids had on their faces.
I would like to thank Janet Grace of One Love Ministries, Kapua Tani and the people at H-5, Dane Kealoha and the following sponsors, Leonard's Bakery who provided the malasadas, Keneke's in Waimanalo who provided the lunches and O'Neill Surf who provided the rash guards and booties for each child. Special thanks to the Honolulu Police Department District 1 Community Policing Team whose main goal is to show support for the people by providing them with education through safety presentations, to share with them how the choices you make in life can affect them both positively and or negatively, but it begins with their own self worth. Let's make Honolulu the safest place to live, work and play. "Click here" to see the event photos.