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About Brown Girl Surf

Our Mission

Brown Girl Surf works to build a more diverse, environmentally reverent, and joyful women’s*, girl’s*, and gender expansive surf culture by increasing access to surfing, cultivating community, amplifying the voices of surfers of color, and taking care of the earth.

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Our Values

Our values are expressed through our Brown Girl Surf Humanifesto…

THESE VALUES ARE TAUGHT TO OUR PARTICIPANTS AND COMMUNITY THROUGH OUR BROWN GIRL SURF HUMANIFESTO SONG:

“We play, we are community,

We are people with the power to be who we wanna be

RESPECT and love to the land and sea,

We keep it fresh and express – with gratitude and peace.”

Play

We play to be free, connected, and rejuvenated.

Community

We are a community that takes care of each other by keeping each other safe, encouraging each other, and including everyone.

Empowerment

We are strong in our bodies and our minds, and invent ourselves in our own images.

Environment

We care for and respect the ocean and land. We show gratitude for the gifts of nature.

Expression Through Arts

We use art to celebrate ourselves and our community.

Gratitude

We practice gratitude to heal and find peace.

Our Strategies

We have four strategies for executing our mission.

Voice

We amplify the voices of girls*, women*, and gender expansive surfers of color, both within our community, in the broader surf culture, and in the world at large.

Community

We build a sense of community through our beach programs, our on-land events (screenings, outings, conservation actions) and through our mode of operating- which engages volunteers, families, and participants as key effectors of change.

Conservation

Central to our holistic curriculum is cultivating a sense of intraconnectedness and care for the earth, both on an emotional level and through the actions we take to protect it.  We conduct stewardship projects, nature education, and environmental actions both within our surf programs, and as stand-alone activities throughout the year.

Access

We create access to surfing and to the ocean, by providing logistical, financial, and cultural support through our programs, outings, and conservation actions. 

Culture Creation

Our programs are meant to create a path towards surf culture creation that celebrates our diverse experiences as girls*, women* and gender expansive people of color – placing joy and environmental reverence at the center – so that more of us can engage in surfing and ocean connection, and all the benefits that entail. We do this by…

Having a staff and volunteer base made up primarily by women* of color.We believe it is important that our participants are taught by women*, girls*, and gender expansive folks who look like them and share their experiences.
Hosting ongoing events that occur outside of surfing, in Oakland and via outings.Some examples of these are our Oakland based environmental cleanups, our Year End Celebration, ocean hikes and film screenings.
Focusing on cultural access in addition to financial and logistical access to the ocean.This includes replacing negative narratives around people of color and the ocean, with positive ones; repositioning surfing in familiar cultural spaces for communities of color; and uplifting histories and cultural traditions that connect women* of color to the ocean and water.
Conducting programs that are intergenerational.
This allows for adults and young folks to develop relationships with each other, drawing on traditional intergenerational forms of care and communication.
Utilizing a Mind-Body-Ocean curriculum which carries mindfulness, gratitude, observation, and caring for the earth as central threads through all our actions.
This allows us to integrate a variety of teaching modalities, cultural traditions, and arts and expression throughout our program days.
Building the capacity of our volunteers and youth to act as ambassadors of Brown Girl Surf.
This allows them to share their love of the ocean and surfing with others.