Thanks to generous donations shoppers, Mangawhai’s opportunity shop – aka ‘The Factory’ – Mangawhai Heads Surf Club’s juniors will be having even more fun in the waves with the purchase of a brand new giant stand up paddleboard.
Junior surf head coordinator Vanessa Fulton says the team ‘are over the moon’.
“We put the idea to the surf club committee that it would be a great thing to have for the juniors and feel very lucky to have the grant accepted,” she says. “We’re quite chuffed about it!”
With more than 150 enrolled members in the junior surf club’s programme, the massive 17-foot paddleboard which can take up to eight adults or ‘possibly 20 kids’, will give the budding young surf lifeguards a large stable object to swim out to while going through their training practice.
Due to the swell of children aged between four and 13 years old enlisting in the programme, Fulton says the more equipment the better.
“Sometimes having a large number of kids training at once can be hard to juggle but at the moment it’s working,” she says. “We’ve also seen a resurgence of 14-15-year-olds returning to become surf life guards… so people will definitely see us out there using the board this summer.”
The new stand up paddleboard gets the thumbs up from the kids, along with Mangawhai Community Opportunity Shop Trust spokesperson Dianne Christensen (far left), junior surf coordinator Vanessa Fulton (far right), and (from top left) junior surf head coach Billy Fulton, Francesca Purcell and Nathan Purcell. Christensen says the Trust is thrilled to support the surf club. PHOTO/JULIA WADE