Cape Town - South African charity, Waves for Change, has been recognised for their outstanding work in the community by winning the Sport for Good category at the 2017 Laureus Awards held in Monaco.
Waves for Change operate in five locations in the country and use surfing as a way to help children overcome psychological challenges, something one in every three suffer with, including post traumatic stress according to the Laureus website.
It does this by providing a safe, fun environment which helps to promote wellbeing in the children who participate.
The charity, established in 2011 is the brainchild of Englishman Tim Conibear and has helped over 1 000 children as well as trained 50 coaches in not only surfing, but lifesaving, child protection and trauma counselling.
Sean Fitzpatrick, Chairman of the Laureus World Sports Academy confirmed that both himself and his fellow Academy Members have been inspired by the work carried out by Conibear and his team.
"The work being done by Tim and his team at Waves for Change is inspirational to say the least. Disadvantaged youth, who are in desperate need of support and direction are given a new lease of life through surfing. It is an incredible success story and my fellow Academy Members were inspired by the work of the programme."
Conibear was elated that his organisation has made a difference in the lives of the youth of South Africa.
"Surfing to these young people is everything. It is an escape, a challenge and a chance for young people to learn and achieve something. In the past four years, we have seen young people with no hope and lacking in confidence return to education, build relationships, develop into talented surfers and become leaders in their own communities. It is an honour to receive this reward from the Laureus Academy and it is further proof that what we doing is working."