June 5, 2012

SIMA’S 23rd Annual Waterman’s Weekend To Benefit Reef Check


ALISO VIEJO, CALIF. (May 29, 2012) – The Surf Industry Manufacturers Association (SIMA) Environmental Fund announced today the 20 ocean-environmental organizations named as beneficiaries of the 23rd Annual Waterman’s Weekend, the surf industry’s annual environmental fundraiser to be held August 10-11, 2012. The weekend begins Friday, August 10, with the Waterman’s Classic Golf Tournament at the Monarch Beach Golf Links, and culminates on Saturday, August 11, with the Waterman’s Ball and auction to be held at The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel, Calif.

The SIMA Environmental Fund aims to continue the record fundraising legacy and raise the amount of $400,000 at the 2012 Waterman’s Weekend. To help achieve this goal, Waterman’s Weekend sponsorship opportunities are now available. The deadline to commit to Waterman’s Ball sponsorships is June 1 and the deadline for the Waterman’s Classic Golf Tournament sponsorships is July 20. For more information on sponsorships, please visit www.WatermansWeekend.com.

All proceeds will be distributed in the form of SIMA Environmental Fund grants to the 20 beneficiary groups. The funds will be dedicated to programs that will address water quality and ocean pollution issues; defend beaches and surf breaks from development; or provide public education about ocean conservation.

“The SIMA Environmental Fund is extremely proud to fund and support the positive environmental impact of the 20 Waterman’s Weekend beneficiary organizations as each one of the beneficiaries is crucial to preserving and protecting our most valuable asset – the ocean.” said Paul Naude, chairman of the SIMA Environmental Fund Board and President of Billabong Americas. “Covering a broad spectrum, the beneficiaries’ environmental work ranges from ocean education, to pollution research, to government lobbying to ocean and surf protection-activism. The surf industry’s very lifestyle and survival depends on the work of these organizations and we look forward to raising funds during Waterman’s Weekend that will go directly to these causes.”

Following is a list of the 2012 SIMA Environmental Fund grant recipients along with adescription of the program(s) to which the organizations will be directing their grants:

Alaska Wilderness League: Dedicated funds will assist with advocating for a comprehensive federal, science-based planning process and to pursue actions to protect Arctic marine ecosystems and subsistence resources from further harm from industrial activities.

Algalita Marine Research Foundation: Funds will be used towards the Plastic Ocean Pollution Solutions Youth Summit. The Summit will teach students about the problems resulting from plastic marine debris in the world’s oceans.

Assateague Coastal Trust: Dedicated funds will assist with watershed patrols, water quality monitoring and the Chesapeake Agricultural Practices Campaign. The funds will also benefit Coast Kids, a family-focused environmental education program, and Grow Berlin Green, a campaign to establish Berlin, Maryland, as a model community for environmental protection.

Cook Inletkeeper: Funds will be used for outreach and education efforts to reduce toxic pollutants entering the North Pacific Gyre. Efforts will revolve around the Electronics Recycling Day in Homer, Alaska.

Heal the Bay: Funds will support the health and safety research of more than 500 beaches and watersheds from Oregon to the border of Mexico for Heal the Bay’s Beach Report Card program for one full year.

KAHEA: The Hawaiian-Environmental Alliance: Funds will be used to build a coalition of Hawaiian oceans activists by challenging nearshore development, defending public beach access, building educational materials advocating for public policies and developing an Action Alert Network.

North Shore Community Land Trust (NSCLT): Funds will be used to permanently protect Pupukea Paumalu and the local waters, community stewardship of public beach access, and other efforts to preserve Oahu’s North Shore.

Ocean Defenders Alliance: Funds will go to expanding their marine debris and underwater clean-up campaign’s range of operations in La Jolla, Coronado Islands, Point Vicente and the Infidel wreck restoration by Catalina Island.

Ocean Institute: Funds will support the Watershed Education Program designed for students for hands-on education about the environmental impact of their behaviors.

Orange County CoastKeeper: Funds will support efforts to reduce the health threats caused by urban runoff pollution in Orange County, Calif., through advocacy, enforcement, education, collaboration, and water monitoring efforts.

Paso Pacifico: Funds will be dedicated to engaging the local Nicaraguan surfing community in protecting their marine and coastal environment through education and coastal clean-ups, as well as helping strengthen the Nicaraguan Surfrider Foundation chapter.

Reef Check: Funds will be used for the continued expansion of the Reef Check California program and its goal to improve marine management in California through education, training and community engagement.

Santa Barbara Channelkeeper: Funds will assist their Advocacy and Enforcement Program which will reduce disposable shopping bag use, compel the city of Santa Barbara to repair aging sewage systems and help the LA Regional Water Quality Control Board to enact a Total Max Daily Load program to address excessive nutrients in the Ventura River.

Santa Monica Baykeeper: Dedicated funds will assist their DrainWatch Water Quality Monitoring Program which will identify the dominant sources of pollution in Santa Monica Bay through end of pipe monitoring.

Save the Waves Coalition: Funds will assist their World Surfing Reserves program to preserve outstanding waves and surf zones around the world; Endangered Waves program that encourages communities worldwide toe address threats to the surfing coastline; and also their Chile Program that is designed to reduce industrial pollution in several coastal areas with world-class surf.

Seymour Marine Discovery Center: Funds will be used towards their school programs, including their exhibit hall enhancement, exhibit renovations and volunteer training. These programs educate the public about the role marine science plays in understanding and conserving the world’s oceans.

SINADES – Natural Systems and Development Civil Association: Funds will be used for their Young Environmental Ambassadors program, which empowers a group of local youth to conserve and protect the community’s most important resources – the beaches and surf breaks of Todos Santos and Pescadero, B.C. S., Mexico.

Surfing Education Association: Dedicated funds will be used to stop illegal shark feeding in Hawaii, stop sand dumping on Waikiki Beach, increase public access on the North Shore and monitor the increase of boat slips that may change surf sites at Kewalo and Ala WaiHarbor.

Surfrider Foundation: Funds will enable efforts to save, improve and protect surf locations, protect the quality of water in the surf zone, ocean environmental education, as well as the continued fight to protect Trestles.

WiLDCOAST: Dedicated funds will support the conservation of threatened surfing areas on the Baja California Peninsula through public and private land conservations, WiLDCOAST chapter development in Punta Abreojos, Bahia Asuncion and Bahia Magdalena.

Each organization was chosen by the SIMA Environmental Fund Board of Directors based on their commitment of funds to specific projects that will protect and preserve oceans, beaches and/or surf breaks. In selecting the 2012 SIMA Environmental Fund grant recipients, the SIMA Environmental Fund Board of Directors requested that applicants submit a proposal detailing how the funds would be used to improve the ocean ecology or surf locations. Each organization’s proposal included a description of the specific program that the grant would be directed to, including the expected environmental impact.

In addition to raising money for the ocean environment, Waterman’s Weekend will also honor big wave surfer Shane Dorian as Waterman of the Year, world renowned ocean explorer, filmmaker, television personality and environmentalist Jean-Michel Cousteau as Environmentalist of the Year, and revolutionary wave forecaster and surfing Hall of Famer the late Sean Collins with the 2012 Lifetime Achievement Award. For more information about the SIMA Environmental Fund or how to secure a Waterman’s Weekend sponsorship, please visit www.WatermansWeekend.com.

The Surf Industry Manufacturers Association (SIMA) is the official working trade association of more than 300 surf industry suppliers. Founded in 1989, SIMA is a non-profit organization that serves to promote awareness of the surf industry and participation in the sport of surfing through public relations efforts and a variety of services, educational programs and research. In addition, SIMAactively supports oceanic environmental efforts through its 501(c)(3) charitable environmental foundation, the SIMA Environmental Fund. In the past 22 years, SIMA’s Environmental Fund has raised more than $5.8 million for environmental groups seeking to protect the world’s oceans, beaches andwaves. The SIMA Humanitarian Fund, also a 501(c)(3) charitable foundation, was established in 2006 to award grants to various surf or boardsport related social and humanitarian non-profit organizations whose efforts are focused on improving the quality of life, health and/or welfare of people.