Ocean Heroes set to surf the spectrum in Noosa

The first Ocean Heroes event in Queensland will be in Noosa on Saturday 18 May.

By Abbey Cannan

Ocean Heroes have shared the thrill of surfing with more than 7000 members of the autism community around Australia, and now they’re set to bring the event to Noosa on Saturday 18 May.

The first Queensland event blossomed with the help of Noosa Vibe House owners Cat and Zeb Aitken, who said events like this were game changing for kids on the autism spectrum and their families.

“Our eight year old son River is on the spectrum and we’ve always been so inspired by people working to create inclusivity and foster connections in this community,“ Cat said.

“We were amazed to hear that while Ocean Heroes have a hugely successful event calendar in WA and NSW, they’ve never run an event in QLD before.

“Surfing is such a fundamentally ingrained part of our lifestyle here in Noosa, so it felt like a very natural move to work towards having an event here and to spread the love among our beautiful local community.

“We’re really hoping Noosa can become a regular stop on the Ocean Heroes event calendar.“

A program like this means kids like River are able to participate in surfing in a safe and inclusive environment where their needs are recognised and supported at every turn.

“Our son River really struggles to try new things,“ Cat said.

“New and unpredictable situations make him extremely anxious and that’s even before you consider the sensory overload of going to the beach.

“For him, the intense heat, bright sunshine, and even wearing a hat and applying sunscreen are major challenges.

“Beyond this, I think it’s a really beautiful way to bring families together and connect in a setting they may not otherwise get a chance to.“

Cat said she felt an instant connection with the team from Ocean Heroes, and co-founders Sam Moyle and Luke Hallam are eager to bring the event to town.

“We were so impressed by their passion and their genuine desire to empower the kids they work with, and the respect and dignity with which they recognised the complex challenges faced by people on the autism spectrum,“ she said.

“We’re looking for volunteers to help us out on the day – this can be in the water or on the sand, we have roles for everyone.

“These events aren’t possible without the generous help of our volunteers, so please reach out if you’re keen to get involved in this truly special event.“

The event is set for Saturday 18 May at Noosa Main Beach West Access 14/15. Entries are free but limited so be quick to register.

For more information including how to register, visit www.oceanheroes.com.au or email sam@oceanheroes.com.au