The tragic images of the Japan earthquake and tsunami rocked the world. Perhaps even worse is the ongoing disaster from the damaged nuclear power stations. Most of the devastated areas are located at prime surf breaks and surfers in Jeffreys Bay decided to do something to help.
Coordinated by Christian Surfers South Africa, surfers from the community rallied around a Japan aid project by raising money by either paddling, walking or skating the full length of the Point from Boneyards to Albatross on Saturday 1st May.
Organiser Roy Harley said before the event “We wanted to raise awareness of both the dangers of nuclear power stations as highlighted by this disaster as well as the plight of the local people in Japan.”
Some 30 surfers paddled (and surfed) their way down the point and another 40 walked and skated alongside. A highlight was the surfers and walkers forming a two circle at Supertubes in memory of, and in solidarity with, the lost in Japan, including some 300 surfers unaccounted for.
Local resident Bradley Jones said “It was great to make a stand against a nuclear power station here in our town.” Visiting surfer Mark Edwards from Capetown commented “Paddling together felt great as we were surfers giving something back to those who have lost everything lost in Japan”.
Christian Surfers is an international organization committed to serving the surfing community, including Japan where they are currently doing aid work in the Iwaki region. All funds raised will be managed by CS Japan and go directly to those in need.
Thyspunt Alliance is a local organization committed to resisting the proposal for a nuclear power station to be built at Thyspunt.
Roy Harley added “Considering the short time frame in which we organized the event, we had a great turn out. As a community we wanted to let people know we care for those suffering in Japan and don’t ever want to see this potential for suffering happening here in J’Bay.”