USA Surfing teamed up with ocean conservation artist Wyland and his foundation to raise awareness and support for clean oceans as surfing made its Olympic debut this summer.
The partnership involving USA Surfing, Wyland Foundation and Los Angeles-based virtual television stations KCBS2/KCAL9 kicked off in April with My Volunteer Water Project, where people were invited to form teams that made a concerted effort to conserve water in their homes, gardens and communities.
An online auction of two surfboards painted by Wyland, which ran through June, commemorated surfing’s first Olympic Games. Marine life art was also featured on shirts, hats and jewelry that can be purchased here. The auction funds and a percentage of the merchandise sales support surf and clean ocean education initiatives.
Wyland Foundation was founded in 1993 and is dedicated to promoting, protecting and preserving the world’s oceans, waterways and marine life. It encourages environmental awareness through community events, education programs and public art projects.
Wyland’s art and the work of his non-profit foundation have been a part of several Olympic Games. His 100th life-sized whale mural for public spaces debuted at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.
“Wyland is a huge fan of surfing and surfing’s playing field – the ocean,” Wyland Foundation president Steve Creech said in a media release. “Surfing’s debut on the world’s largest sporting stage, is an incredible opportunity to promote clean oceans, healthy marine life and surfing!”
USA Surfing is the national governing body for surfing in the United States. Its mission is to promote and grow surfing and support American athletes in Olympic, Paralympic, Pan American and Parapan American competitions.
American surfer Carissa Moore, who won a gold medal at this year’s Olympics in Japan, is a Surfrider Foundation ambassador who has hosted several beach clean-ups to rid her local surf breaks in Hawaii of plastic pollution.
Surfrider Foundation is a grassroots non-profit environmental organization that works to protect and preserve the world's oceans, waves and beaches. It focuses on water quality, beach access, beach and surf spot preservation, and sustaining marine and coastal ecosystems.
“I want my children and the generations after to be able to walk the same beaches, surf the same reefs and enjoy the same wildlife and ocean ecosystems that have made a difference in my life,” Moore said in the release.