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Meet Maui Goodbeer of StreetWaves Corporation

Today we’d like to introduce you to Maui Goodbeer.

Founded by Maurice “Maui”, a “Soul Surfer” from San Diego, California who has dedicated his life to bringing youth from under-served communities out to the ocean to swim, surf, and sail. StreetWaves is a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization that successfully offers its program through generous donations, grants and volunteerism. StreetWaves has successfully taught thousands of youth how to surf, paddle and sail and provides an enriching outdoor experience that connects participants with nature, their community at large and themselves.

Founded on Forgiveness. In 2003, Maui’s younger brother Melvyn W. Patterson III was brutally gunned down in an Oceanside California Shopping Mall by a 16 year old gang member. Maui, while delivering his brothers eulogy made a promise that he would personal do “something” to help youth in need. In 2008 the vision for StreetWaves came to him while out on a lone surf session in Miami Beach.

The StreetWaves team is passionate about exposing urban youth to ocean life. StreetWaves expands the opportunities of youth who’s socioeconomic, historic, and or cultural differences may have excluded them from the ocean and shoreline. They believe that the majesty of the sea and the mastery of the ocean cultivate courage, confidence, commitment, and character. Their team is dedicated to transforming the lives of America’s youth by mentoring students through open water sports as they develop their personal foundation through a bonded relationship with the sea. Their well-trained, committed team members are Red Cross certified Lifeguards and their vetted volunteers include youth that have been promoted from within the program as well as leading community mentors, surfers, teachers and special guests who volunteer in guiding youth through the instructional swim and surf program.

The StreetWaves Mentorship program provides an enriching outdoor experience that connects students with nature, their community at large and themselves. Their educational program exposes youth to beach and ocean culture, lifesaving open water swimming proficiency, surfing, and coaches the students in Ocean awareness, environmental education and water safety. It is their firm belief that the majesty of the Ocean and the wisdom of the Wave provide a powerful opportunity and safe haven for individual expression and personal growth. Their team is passionate about introducing students to the Ocean and connecting them with a fun experience where they will feel camaraderie, love and respect.

StreetWaves is now serving Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach Counties, and building capacity along the coast.

Has it been a smooth road?
The road is long and filled with potholes, traffic and hazards but it has been an extremely exciting adventure. Initially I thought that everyone would love what we do and give full support, and for many that is the case but as with most things in life there is opposition. Our country has a very negative history surrounding the water. Public pools and ocean access has not always been available to the communities that we serve, and many people are uncomfortable with these changes as we introduce under-served children to the various aspects of water sports. This has been our most exciting work as we advocate for these changes and protect the rights of children to learn how to swim proficiently and navigate the sea competently. Developing partnerships has been a really fun and creative side of our work and seeking funding has often come with its challenges but has been quite rewarding as well.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the StreetWaves Corporation story. Tell us more about the business.
What makes StreetWaves unique is the attention that we give to serving America’s youth underdog’s and giving children that have been overlooked by society an opportunity to become familiar with the sea and the blue economy in a healthy, caring and competent manner. Our attention to the details of swimming and surfing proficiency open up opportunities to explore the possibilities in the sea. The ocean is home to multi-billion dollar industries and we work diligently to share this with our participants. Ocean awareness and environmental stewardship is at the forefront of our work.

How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
We are poised to become a national organization that meets the water proficiency needs of youth participants throughout the country.

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