You are viewing an archived entry from the 2023 awards

Judges’ Award 2023 Gold Longform £350,000-£5 million

Victory of Determination


The Wave Project helps vulnerable children and young people across the UK with mental health challenges through surf therapy. We run award-winning surf therapy programmes for children aged 8-18 across the UK. Using trained volunteer mentors, we help children improve their emotional health and wellbeing through free and subsidised surfing lessons. We also run a beach school project for children who may benefit from learning outside the classroom.


The children and young people in the UK are suffering from a mental health crisis following the pandemic. 1 in 6 children had a probable mental health disorder in 2021 according to a recent NHS report. This manifests through sleeping problems, eating problems, an increase in self-harm and hospitalisation and children we are working with are presenting with significant problems ranging from extreme anxiety, depression and self-harm.


We have an evidence based intervention that is recognised by the NHS, local authorities and psychiatric services to be effective in improving the well being, outlook, self esteem and confidence of children and young people. The intervention combines surfing with mentoring and principles of group therapy. Over a course of 6 weeks the children learn to surf, make friends and feel more confident about themselves, enabling them to tackle other problems in their lives. 

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UN Sustainable Development Goals

We align with the following UN Sustainable Development Goals: