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Surfrider Foundation General Assembly
Publicerad söndag 11 maj 2008 av Matthew FaderInnehåll / Artiklar

Anglet, Saturday 3rd of May after the swell dropped. Photo from Magicseaweed.
The Surfrider Foundation Europe general assembly (årsmöte) was held on the 2nd and 3rd of May in Biarritz. Arriving a few days earlier, I was greeted to 15ft surf with offshore winds at Cote de Basque. Barrel after barrel. It was tough to get out of the water and do some real work but we managed to have two full days of workshops, heated discussions about organization / membership and chapter presentations.

Of course I was up for the dawn patrol, in the water for the lunch and sunset sessions. Surfed Chambre dAmour / VVF alone with the sun rising to light up 8ft pits. Pretty much surfed all of Anglet down to Les Cavaliers where the pros were warming up for the Oxbow longboard comp.

We all stayed in the same hotel. We worked hard but played harder. Surfrider organized big parties for everyone. In the middle of the night after one such party, Jean Marc from Surfrider Paris and Manu from Surfrider Corsica dumped ice in my bed so that I would feel at home!

Shortly after the meetings began I quickly realised that Surfrider Europe is more or less Surfrider France. They are still quite unsure how to run things internationally even if it’s within the EU. A representative from Surfrider Foundation USA who is in charge of co-ordinating chapters worldwide was virtually ignored by the French. However they are extremely eager in getting things started up in Scandinavia. Out of the 30 or so project presentations, mine was one of three picked to be presented at the main assembly in front of a large audience and international media.

I presented Sweden as a surfing nation with our cold water stoke, the beach clean-ups, and environmental issues of Swedish waters like toxic algae blooms but most importantly I talked about the incredible work of the Skånes Vågsurfare with Rädda Mölle. Everyone was blown away by the commitment that Swedish surfers have to surfing in extreme conditions as well as preserving our natural resources.

The waves dropped to only 3ft (but who’s complaining) & I spent a few extra days at the Surfrider office talking strategy before coming home to svedala on Wednesday. I’m continuing to develop and establish Surfrider Foundation here in Sweden but things move slowly in France, so have patience, we want to do this right from the beginning.

Stay stoked, Matt
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