At 35 million surfers and growing, Surfing is widely heralded as a fast-growing, ‘in’ sport and lifestyle. Surf Travel in particular has incredible potential for sparing the tourism industry in developing nations, a fact made all the more significant as 83% of the developing world cites tourism as the principal export. Unfortunately the average surf trip is all too often sterile of any meaningful interaction with the destination visited. The local community suffers all the drawbacks associated with increasing tourism (social, environmental and cultural degradation) with little if any benefits. Massive economic leakage (eg: foreign owned properties, goods made in china) ensures that the local population remains impoverished and servile. Extreme versions of this tragic reality can be found in locations around the world, where privatized beaches dedicated to wealthy travelers are made inaccessible to anyone else
Launched in partnership with big-wave pro-surfer and activist Easkey Britton, Sustain the Stoke redefines the surf trip as an act of social good. Empowering local, surf-related cause organizations to play the role of host, STS crafts and executes thrilling, culturally-immersive group surf trips that directly benefit the communities visited, while minimizing or offsetting all carbon footprints of the travelers. Beyond the trips, Sustain the Stoke aims to provide an alternative lifestyle portrait of the surfing community, drawing to its natural connection with nature and community, while highlighting brands, organizations and individuals that are leaders in the space.
In two successful surf trips, Sustain the Stoke introduced 50 travelers to the concept of immersive, impactful tourism, while building new revenue and awareness streams for the Kovalam Surf Club (India) and Give & Surf (Panama). Trips for the next 12 months are in development, while new partnerships with brands and projects aligned with the STS message are mounting.