When Scarborough teenager Ellie Marston joined the Wave Project in the Spring of 2017, she had been bullied in her previous school. Her confidence and self esteem had been hit hard and she was struggling to keep her head up.
On her first session at Cayton Bay, Scabrorough, Ellie burst into tears. “I felt so negative about myself. All I thought about life was that you live to die. I just didn’t want to do it.”
But then a Wave Project volunteer started chatting to Ellie. They helped settle her anxieties about the surf lesson. By talking to her, by allowing her to go at her own pace, she found the confidence to catch her first wave. Within moments she had caught the surf bug.
Ellie came back every week. And with each session her self-esteem improved, thanks in part to the positive input from the volunteer surf mentors and coaches.
“After doing the Wave Project, my whole outlook on life changed. People there were just much more enthusiastic about life. Now I’ve got more confidence about doing stuff and I will give things a go.”
Ellie has moved to a new school and made new friends. “Before I wouldn’t trust people, but now I feel so much better about myself and I’ve made a load of new friends. They’re all really positive people.”
In the future, Ellie hopes to volunteer for The Wave Project and help to mentor other young people through surf therapy.
This is a charity story from The Wave Project.