Tag Archives: #surfing

Why volunteer at Misión México? Why not?

My name is Merric and this is my fourth visit to Misión México.

Misión México is an inspiration to me. I first visited in 2004 and I have known many of the young adults since they were young children.

They have been able to develop skills and knowledge through education, the commitment of Pam and Alan and the many volunteers who come to share their professional knowledge and skills.

It is great to see opportunities opened up for them so their hopes and dreams can become a reality.

Coming back on each visit and seeing the developments and accomplishments of the children is a humbling and joyful experience. I have had the privilege to share my skills in piano with some of the kids, Sammy, in particular has shown great learning ability in the practice of the piano.

Sammy has a keen interest in piano and watching him develop so quickly and take on board what I have to teach him has been greatly inspiring.

Pam y Sammy

Mama with Sammy

I am currently visiting to assist in the landscaping of a new educational and surf training facility, MisiónSurf. I am thrilled to be involved with such a major project that will bring much needed jobs, educational opportunities and tourism to the Tapachula area.

This will allow the children to put into practice the skills and knowledge gained through their education.

Mision Surf landscaping begins

I feel privileged to be able to share the skills and abilities I have gained through my life and to be able to share in the lives of these amazing individuals as they grow.

For volunteering opportunities please email volunteer@lovelifehope.com and visit our website for more information.

Community development through tourism at Misión México

Junior and Meche

The 27th September is World Tourism Day and this year the theme is Tourism and Community Development, focusing on the ability of tourism to empower people and provide them with skills to achieve change in their local communities. The official celebrations are taking place in Guadalajara, Mexico in a day dedicated to different understanding the value of different forms of tourism, whether it be volun-tourism, eco-tourism, agri-tourism or adventure tourism.

At Misión México we have seen first hand the huge benefits alternative types of tourism can bring. Pam and Alan and the children have been truly empowered by people who choose to volunteer with us. From teachers, to engineers, builders, to surf instructors, each and every one of them have contributed towards Misión México’s education program, surf program, work training program and youth transition program. Each of them is specifically designed to improve the lives of each and every child, and in turn contribute towards achieving change in the local community.

Stefan-australia

Of course the benefits of volun-tourism also extends to the volunteers themselves; our previous volunteers have described their time with us as ‘the most amazing experience of my life’ ‘incredibly rewarding’ ‘truly inspirational’ and ‘a life enriching experience’.

 

 

Jacob and Marli in 2013

Our firm belief in the power of tourism underpins the thinking behind our work training program, Misión Surf. This project aims to build a sustainable surfing community, complete with a Surf School, Surf Camp and Retail Shop, Surfboard Repair Workshop, Life Guard Services and a Restaurant. Not only will it become a top tourist destination for new surfers, it will benefit the lives of the children and bring change to the local community.

 

It will provide exciting tourism opportunities for those who visit the complex  – our waves and location provide the ideal opportunity for surf lessons – and our burritos will be the best in town.  Our complex will include football, netball and a skate park as well as a pool and cafe to relax in!

Mision Surf

Misión Surf will provide the older children with the opportunity to develop important work skills like hospitality, tourism, business and retail. It will share the excitement of surfing with the local Mexican community by teaching them surf skills, sea safety and the importance of our environment, particularly around beaches and oceans.

By sharing knowledge on surfing techniques, conditions, awareness, safety and environmental issues with the local community it will lead cleaner, safer, friendlier beaches as well as bringing more business to the local impoverished areas. And the icing on the cake? This program will eventually lead to Albergue Misión México becoming self-sufficient.

We are inviting local and international professionals and tradesmen to volunteer and share their knowledge and expertise with the refuge’s young adults in what promises to be a challenging and rewarding experience.

Maria surfing

Maria surfing

Thanks to the amazing support from Guzman y Gomez in Australia, Compound Boardshop in Florida and the Norm Innes Foundation in Queensland, as well as many other fundraisers and donors we are on our way to completing this program.

We are hoping to open the doors in 2015! More support is needed to complete the project  – if you want to get involved please visit our website, contact us or donate here.

We’d be stoked to have you part of our program and look forward to welcoming you to visit us at Misión Surf.

Missed the big wave surfing feature with Andrew Cotton? Watch the full program here…..

suring the big waves

Our UK surf ambassador, Andrew Cotton, featured on 60 Minutes Australia last Sunday night. He was interviewed about his passion for big wave surfing.
For those of you who missed it you can watch the full program here.
We asked Andrew about being on this popular program:
“I couldn’t believe it when I got a email from the guys at 60minutes Australia saying they wanted to interview me, I thought they we’re kidding.
They came over and spent 3 days in North Devon where I live and work.”
He hasn’t seen the finished piece yet but was really “stoked by the feedback it received from everyone in Australia who watched it.”

Well done Andrew – we’re ‘stoked’ to have you on board with us!

Riding the wave

new balance 645 mens

Riding the Monster Waves – our UK surf ambassador Andrew Cotton talks to 60 Minutes Australia

Not the surf break at Mision Mexico!  Andrew Cotton big wave riding

Our UK surf ambassador, Devon born Andrew Cotton, talks to 60 Minutes Australia’s Tara Brown about mastering the world’s biggest waves on Sunday night 8pm Sydney local time.

Andrew hit the headlines surfing a monster 8oft wave last October at Nazare, Portugal.

Andrew Cotton was born in Plymouth and grew up on the North Devon Coast where he first started surfing at the age of seven. Ever since then, catching waves and being in and around the ocean has been his life.
new balance 374
When he left school he worked in a local surfboard factory until the age of twenty-five. He then re-trained as a plumber, but along the way began to realise that his real passion lay in big wave surfing. Initially Andrew focussed on helping to pioneer big wave spots in Ireland, and more recently he turned his attention to Nazare, Portugal. Numerous Billabong XXL entries followed and he came to wider attention in 2012 when he towed American surfer Garrett McNamara into what the Guinness Book of World Records confirmed as the biggest wave ever surfed.

Since then Andrew has a number of indisputably big waves under his belt, one or two of which have caused debate in the press as to whether they are even bigger than Garret’s record. With the national and global media coverage that followed, it might be said that he has been helping to push the boundaries as to what was thought possible and put Great Britain firmly on the surfing map.

Andrew became our UK surf ambassador in 2012 after the UK charity was established to raise funds for the children in Tapachula.

Andrew also said it was the passion for surfing and the great story behind Misión México that enticed him to get involved with us:

“Seeing the video Somewhere near Tapachula about the kids at Misión México and what Alan and Pamela Skuse were doing there really inspired me. Surfing has brought so much happiness into my life and seeing it do the same for these kids was amazing,? said the big wave professional surfer.

Andre’s sponsors include Tiki Surf Company Mercedes-Benz Vito Sport SunGod Sunglasses Bay Fitness Lifedge @dryrobe Mercedes-Benz South West and Island Tribe UK

 

Andrew and Katie Cotton with their children

Andrew’s wife, and mother of their two children, is not a surfing fan; “surfing doesn’t float my boat?. But she understands Andrew’s approach to what he does:
It’s a strong drive that he’s got and a fierce passion. And that’s admirable – he’s a good role model,? she said.

We’re delighted to have Andrew representing our surfing programme and supporting our efforts in the UK.

Our new Mision Mexico Surf Board