Raising money for The Wave Project

We’re incredibly proud to have just donated a years’ worth of cash raised by our local community in St Agnes to surf therapy charity The Wave Project, part of which will fund a place for local youngster, Seb Crosby-Moore.

The connection between our pub in Trevaunance Cove and Seb’s family came about thanks to local social prescribing service Community Connect, which aims to encourage and improve wellbeing by connecting people with their communities, nurturing mental and physical health, and reducing isolation.

Eight-year-old Seb, who lives in St Agnes Parish with his family, was diagnosed with a brain tumour at the age of three and has undergone extensive and successful surgery, plus treatment including chemotherapy and radiotherapy, allowing him to live a full life.

However, because of his health challenges and extended periods in hospital, Seb lags behind in physical ability and confidence in comparison to his peers.

Like his mother Abby – who is a Marine Biologist – Seb loves the water, but spending time in the sea is particularly difficult, although it would be highly beneficial to his physical and mental health and help him to socialise with his friends.

Abby explained: “Seb’s health challenges have created a barrier between him and the sea, and subsequently our whole family, throughout his childhood. As his friends and classmates become more confident in and around the water, Seb is missing out on one of the major benefits of a childhood spent on the Cornish coast.”

The £1.5k raised by The Driftwood Spars will cover the referral fee for Seb and several others to join The Wave Project, a pioneering surf therapy programme for young people which aims to change lives through surfing.

And, thanks to the Big Give Campaign, the donation made this week was doubled to £3k – a significant amount which will help up to 19 other children and young people follow in Seb’s footsteps in the coming years.

Fred Andrews, Newquay Project Coordinator for The Wave Project, said: “Seb is due to start with us next spring, and we’re already looking forward to working with Community Connect to identify other children in the St Agnes area who could benefit from participating in the project. As a charity, our aim is to give as many young people as possible access to the therapeutic benefits of surfing, and I can’t wait to see Seb out there enjoying himself in the waves!”

Abby added: “This is the most positive and beneficial thing that can happen to Seb right now. As he gets older, he’s more self-conscious about his limitations. Getting into the water will boost his self-esteem enormously, and really help him mentally as well as physically. We as a family are very grateful for the community spirit which has bought this opportunity about.”

Each year we raise money for a different cause through various events including quiz nights, raffles and an unwanted Christmas gift exchange; on top of this, 10p from every pint sold of the pub’s own ‘Spars’ beer goes into the fundraising pot.

The 2021 fund was earmarked from the beginning for Community Connect, who agreed to allocate it where it would make a profound difference to individuals or groups within the local community.

Nikki Kelly from Community Connect said: “This is just the kind of proactive, community-based support and connectedness we’re trying to achieve through the project. Social prescribing is all about taking a holistic view of people’s health and finding non-medical treatments to improve physical and mental wellbeing. Surf therapy is a great example, and the team at The Wave Project have already helped thousands of young people.”

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