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Meet Maurice “Maui” Goodbeer of StreetWaves

Today we’d like to introduce you to Maurice “Maui” Goodbeer.

Maurice, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
StreetWaves was started in 2008 based on a promise that I made at my younger brother’s funeral. My younger brother born on my birthday 8 years later was brutally murdered in an Oceanside, CA Shopping Mall by a 16-year-old gang member in 2003. I made a promise that I would personally do something to help inner city children and I honored that promise by starting StreetWaves. While on a lone surf session in Miami Beach, the idea came to me to bring at risk youth to the ocean. I learned how to surf at a young age by skipping school and going to surf at Blacks Beach, Lowers and Imperial Beach. I realized that the dynamic is much the same throughout the country where children living in near coastal communities are getting into major trouble in life and completely missing out on the majesty of the sea. Since 2008, we have taught over 3000 children how to surf and are soon to return to San Diego as a national organization and we are looking to open a San Diego chapter.

Has it been a smooth road?
It started off very challenging as the Non-Profit world was very new to me and started something like this in Miami came with its own very unique set of challenges. I found it quite interesting navigating the politics of non-profit work in the beginning everything from working with under-resourced communities to understanding the governing bodies along the shoreline and the roles that each play in developing a successful organization. Building a donor base that would support this initiative was quite fascinating and surprising as we initially found more support and appreciation for our work from overseas nations. It took a little while for our support to grow in the U.S. but once the idea became more understood and accepted here in the US then grants, donors, volunteers and fundraising events became more streamline.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the StreetWaves story. Tell us more about the business.
At StreetWaves, our philosophy is “Let the water do the work” and “Let the sea set you free” Over the years we have experienced children that have had some of the most horrific, traumatizing personal experiences that one can imagine and we realize the power of the gift that we give by bringing them to the ocean. The ocean has many healing properties and just by holding space for children away from their regular environment creates a pattern interrupt that can be very influential on their lives. The magic of the wave and the connection to nature that we share connects our student participants with themselves in a way that enhances self love and an appreciation for their natural environment, their personal ability, and greatly improves their quality of life. Our specialty is introducing a population of people to the ocean that historically have been excluded from ocean going experiences. We are known as the very best place to learn how to surf. We have decoded myths, developed special techniques, and created a fool proof system that gets our participants to experience success quickly.

We are most proud of our ability to connect with a culture of people that have been neglected, rejected, and protected from the water and share with them a life changing experience. What sets us apart is that we expose the communities that we work with not only to surfing but to all of the opportunities available in the “Blue Economy” We share the various professions and job opportunities that exist and connect them with various blue industries. We also have a great emphasis on the importance of swimming proficiently. We focus a great deal on swimming because it is also an area that we have many deficiencies in the communities that we serve.

How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
For the first time ever, Surfing will debut in the 2020 Olympic Games in Japan. We believe that with the type of exposure that we give, we will soon begin to see more under-resourced children competing in the sport of surfing. It’s the natural progression of things. We are already seeing many other countries growing in their surfing. Surfing has gained popularity around the world and here in the US we are seeing changes in the surfing landscape as well. We believe that there will be a day where surfing culture will include all of them.

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1 Comment

  1. Carl Kruse

    June 23, 2018 at 12:31 pm

    Wonderful Maui! Wonderful Street Waves. Beautiful work that makes the world better.

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