Imagine the following scenario:
You are starting a social enterprise: Wavewise – Surf Sessions as Life Lessons. You work, you create, you cooperate, you organize, you sweat, you cry, you laugh and… you put your idea out into the world by creating a crowdfunding campaign to get your project up and running.
Imagine then to receive an email from a man called Peter Morrison, who writes that he has heard about Wavewise and is interested to see its businessplan – that he started surfing in the 60ies in Westport – and that surfing didn’t only influence his career path hugely, but that it made a difference for him personally when he was growing up on the Coast.
And now imagine the last step: After some emails and questions to see if you have properly planned what you are talking about, he offers you to top up your crowdfunding campaign to get your project started! Why? Simply because he believes in it!
I can’t put into words how astonished I was and how grateful Wavewise is to receive such generous support!
Therefore I am honoured to introduce you to Peter Morrison – to his story, to his views and his reasons for supporting Wavewise:
Hi Peter! Can you tell us a bit about how and when have you started surfing?
I started surfing in 1967 when a new Buller High School student, Kim Wright, arrived from Wellington with a modern fibreglass surfboard.
Before that, I had seen snippets of surfing on TV but there was no Google then and information was almost impossible to find. There were a few older guys, maybe 2 or 3, who had ancient boards but no one in Westport surfed seriously or all year round. Kim and I became friends and started surfing together at every opportunity and soon there was a hardcore group of surf rats who just lived for surfing. Guys like; Willy Williamson, Raymond Peeky Peek, Kevin and Rusty Roberts, The Perry bros; Ian and Malcolm, Gus Stephenson, Jock Kitchen, Jimmy Clark, Barry Odea, the Alexanders and a few others. Initially, it was all trial and error, but over time a few magazines were passed around, and we would travel to Christchurch to see surf movies like Morning of the Earth. We had a great time searching out all the waves between Little Wanganui and Cobden. (…)
What influence did surfing have in your life?
For me surfing was a saviour, being a teenager in Westport in the 60’s was a tough gig especially if you had no interest in rugby which we didn’t. It taught me many life lessons, connected me with nature and gave me a healthy passion that has lasted a lifetime. I was lucky enough to be able to start a business from my passion for surfing that grew into one of Australias’ biggest privately owned media companies.
Looking back from today’s point of view: What impact for your mental wellbeing did surfing have for you?
Surfing gave me a healthy, active escape and taught me persistence and patience, and you’ll never become a competent surfer without being patient and persistent – the ocean is a tough master.
Why are you supporting Wavewise?
I would like to see other young and maybe not so young people have the opportunity to get the same benefits from surfing that I did and still do. I believe like you do that through surfing we can improve lives and possibly even save lives by introducing people to surfing and the ocean.
Thank you so much for believing in Wavewise and for your generous contribution, Peter! Your support is highly appreciated!
The following article about Peters contribution to Wavewise and his story was published in Westport News, March 2019: