Child Friendly Mental Health Services for Under Resourced Communities
Surf Therapy combines the health benefits of surfing and physical activity with activities that help young people build protective relationships, identify emotions, self soothe and build a positive future vision.
Surf Therapy builds social connections, provides respite from difficult thoughts and feelings, and develops skills to cope with stress.
We support partners to design, evaluate and implement Sport for Mental Health programmes globally. Our content is open access and we love to share with partners.
About Waves for Change
Waves for Change is a registered South African non-profit organisation. Since 2009, we have worked with universities, children and young people to develop a community based, child-friendly mental health service.
Through published, participatory research, our Surf Therapy programme has been co-designed with children and youth alongside supervision from local mental health experts. Together we have created an innovative programme that is both child and youth friendly and evidence based.
Our programme improves children’s well-being through skills to cope with chronic adversity, trauma and toxic stress.
At a community and provincial level, we improve access to community-based, child-friendly mental health services. We provide a best practice model for integrated, physical activity based mental health services in uninsured, under-resourced communities across South Africa.
Report feeling happier
Report feeling more confident
Are better able to calm down when they feel sad, angry or scared
Have improved Heart Rate Variability
Amber, Surf Mentor, Muizenberg Site
I'm a caring coach making a change in kids' lives by helping them with their mental health, to think more positively.
Alwaba, Surf Mentor, Gqeberha Site
Waves for change has helped me with my mental health by providing a safe environment for us coaches to be vulnerable and supported in every way.
Sisanda, Surf Mentor, East London Site
Being able to provide such support and guidance to the children is something that makes me feel proud of myself because it is something that I never got or experienced growing up.
Sihle, Surf Mentor, Monwabisi Site
I have developed some self confidence because usually I was not the type of person who believes in himself but now I believe in myself and also I have found some sense of belonging and I'm more positive.
Lelihle, Surf Mentor, Hout Bay Site
I’m aware of my mental health and I now understand myself better, thanks to Waves for Change.
Mental health resources, updates on Surf Therapy, and exciting announcements.