11-time World Champion surfer Kelly Slater recently made statements, published around the world, underlining the worrying decline of the natural environment on Bali’s shorelines and surrounding waters [See: A Warning from the Sea].
Trying to make a difference, Kelly donated one of his surfboard for public auction pledging to match dollar-for-dollar the winning bid to be donated to the ROLE Foundation, a Bali-based environmental organization engaged in saving Bali’s environment and provides educational and employment assistance to disadvantaged women in Bali.
The winning bid for 11-time World Champion surfer Kelly Slater's surfboard was $4,000, which was matched, as promised, by another $4,000 from the champion’s own pocket for a total $8,000 donation going to the ROLE Foundation.
ROLE's founder and CEO Michael O'Leary was extremely gratified when he heard the news, saying, "I would like to thank Kelly Slater from the bottom of my heart for raising these much needed funds. This $8,000 will go toward managing our seven projects that include education programs such as the Children's Interactive Environmental Education Tour, which is directed at bringing our environmental message to the families and the communities of Bali through the kids, and on to the Solid and Liquid Waste Infrastructure Construction Project at Uluwatu."
"Kelly also has brought a great measure of global awareness to Bali's dire pollution problems, and hopefully this awareness will help gain further commitments towards attaining a healthy island and coastal environmental eco-systems for Bali's land, waterways, reefs and seas,” added O'Leary.
From Australia Ex-Manly Sea Eagle halfback Matt Orford put in the top bid of $4,000 at an on-line auction to win the board.
Delighted at having won the chance to call the champion’s surfboard his own, Orford said: "I'm so very pleased and also honored to have won Kelly's surfboard and to contribute to the on-going efforts to clean up the island of Bali. I've been coming to Bali on holidays for years now, usually spending a month just after the footy season ends, so I have a real love and concern for this special island," said Orford.
"When I saw Hoyo's (ex pro surfer Matt Hoy) twitter about the board auction and then saw Kelly's comments about Bali all over the news, I knew I had to help out. That board will be the best trophy I've had yet, as it's not only from the greatest surfer the world has ever seen but is also a reminder that we have to care about our environment or we won't have great places to surf, hang out on the beach, and enjoy our holidays anymore. Money isn't the ultimate solution, education is, but money helps get the ball rolling so I'm really stoked to be contributing to the cause. Some of the lads from the Melbourne Storm and Manly Sea Eagles, as well as both State Of Origin teams are signing some NRL memorabilia that we're sending to Quiksilver in Bali to be auctioned off to help raise even more money" he commented.
Hoy was one of the many surfers who got behind Quiksilver's request to spread the news about the surfboard auction after Slater's twitters went viral and captured the attention of the international press. An excerpt from Slater's April 22nd tweet reads, "If Bali doesn't do something serious about this pollution it'll be impossible to surf here in a few years. Worst I've ever seen." Hoy has been with Quiksilver for years and has been to Bali many times, so he immediately started putting the word out.
"Bali has given so much to us as surfers, so it's time we did something to give back," said Hoy. "And this is just the first step, as on July 7-8th myself, Tom Carroll, Mark Richards, Martin Potter and Jake Paterson are going to Bali for the Quiksilver/Coca-Cola sponsored Big Bali Eco Weekend, and we're bringing replica's of our most iconic surfboards to be auctioned off to raise money and create more visibility to the environmental issues facing Bali right now. I'm stoked that Kelly is on board as his name will add a whole new level of exposure, and together we all can really help to clean up Bali's water and beaches."
Quiksilver Indonesia has been partnering with Coca-Cola Amatil Indonesia since 2009 in a corporate social responsibility effort to buy tractors and set up beach cleaning crews; creating and supporting Beach Sea Turtle Conservation; and supporting the Bali Lifeguards with sunglasses, clothing, and much more.
During the weekend of July 7-8, 2012, Quiksilver Indonesia and Coca-Cola Amatil Indonesia will stage their second annual Big Bali Eco Weekend, an event dedicated to creating maximum visibility for Bali's environmental issues that includes bringing surfing legends Mark Richards, Tom Carroll, Martin Potter, Jake Paterson and Matt Hoy up from Australia, who will raise money by auctioning off iconic surfboards, sign posters, compete in a Local's versus Legends surf-off, and meet with regional and local government officials to discuss solutions.
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