23 February, 2016 23 February, 2016

Pass the Fish – Part III

It’s time to Pass The Fish again, and for the third installment, we headed down to Durban’s New Pier and met up with the Surfers Not Street Children crew. For the next few months, Zigzag in partnership with John Dory’s will be visiting grassroots surfing initiatives around the country to share the stoke by sharing with them the specially created quiver and a hearty meal at their local John Dory’s. Read more about Pass the Fish here >>

Watch Part I here and Part II here.

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On any given day you will find the larneys driving down the newly named Mahatma Ghandi Road, cutting straight through many of the Durban’s social problems. Their air conditioned 4x4s, windows up, doors locked, praying for a run of green lights, that means they won’t have to stop in front of the pay-per-hour Hotel rooms, the dimly lit alleyways, where dealers try make eye contact, the first hook of a potential sale, en route to check the progress of their residential penthouse developments built around the Durban Yacht Club.

The Point is an area where job opportunities and role models are rare. It’s all too easy for the area’s youth to stray down those dim alleys and into lives of crime, gangs and vice without any guidance, never to return the same. Strange how a road named after the great Ghandi could do with so much of his humanitarian touch. On Mahatma Ghandi Road, however, the hope is just a short trip through one of those dark alleyways that leads you to the ocean.

A few hundred meters walk and you find yourself at the Durban beachfront, with the man made piers offering up some of the best, most consistent waves in the world. The warm water and easy access, along with the constant availability of waves has the New Pier producing many world class surfers throughout the ages. As a resource, the ocean provides a healthy lifestyle to many and all forms of wave riders and beach enthusiasts, it’s easy to think that the direction of a youngsters life can be changed just by picking up a surfboard.

Surfers Not Street Children have spearheaded a new project, the creation of a surf club for for the Point Community. Not just street kids, but everyone from the community who wants to learn to surf, can do so for free. Using pieces of a surfing and social change curriculum pioneered by Waves For Change in Cape Town and supported by KZN Surfing, Surfing South Africa, Zigzag and John Dory’s, the project is headed up by distinguished SA surf coach, World Surf League judge, goofy shredder and South Coast legend, Sandile “Cyril” Mqadi.

With the combined knowledge, guidance and positive influence of Tom and Cyril, the future is wide open to the youth of Durban’s Point area. Who knows, in the near future we may have a young immigrant, or local running from civil war or a water crisis in a land locked African country, come through the Surf Club and onto the world stage of professional surfing.

For the third installment of our Pass the Fish* Surf jam, we met up with Tom Hewitt, Cyril Mqadi and their newly formed Surf Club run from the KZN Surfing locker in the New Pier parking lot. Hugh Thomson created an awesome quiver of single fin’s, fishes and longboards while Zag Designer, Nathan Roodt, brought them to life with some fishy art. After meeting in the car park, the team handed out the retro boards and hit the surf together. Gifted with light Westerly winds and a punchy New Pier a-frame, the session saw us splitting peaks and sharing waves with Tom, Cyril and the boys from Surfers Not Street Children for the afternoon before treating everyone to a post-surf feast at John Dory’s.

Most of the boys are goofy footers and took to the bowl wave, showing the advantage of having fine tuned their surfing in the rips created by the piers. Their enthusiasm was shown by their huge wave count. With the whole SNSC crew in the water, there was constantly someone up and riding. Their forehand attack in the bowl is a daily occurrence and the boys banter about who surfs the most, and the best, while passing around the boards.

After the fun of the fishes, and having worked up an appetite in the bowl, we headed to John Dory’s at Suncoast Casino for a feast of fresh fish and a selection of their finest seafood. The crew inhaled their sushi starters and the laughter was contagious with the mutation of the boys faces at tasting their first mussle or trying the sashimi. The main course arrived, a table load of fresh seafood, and Tom spoke to us about Cyril and their new venture with SNSC.

With dessert and milkshakes all round, a big thanks goes to John Dory’s for providing the stoke and passing it on to Tom, Cyril and the team of Surfers Not Street Children.

Cyril will be running the curriculum every day, 9am – 5pm, from the KZN Surfing locker in the New Pier parking lot.

*Pass the Fish, is a unique partnership between John Dory’s and Zigzag, committed to grow and support grass roots surfing in South Africa.


  1. sam
    25 February, 2016 at 8:26 am · Reply

    Well nice….Its about time a helping hand is given to the poor white kids as well.
    With a stigma still attached to it,it might take awhile for any to come foward and take advantage of the situation presented.
    So, if they are reading this, take advantage, sign up snd feel the stoke.
    But at least we are moving forward,
    im tired of hearing “im black, im poor,please give me”.
    Not every minority kid has a perfect life with rich parents and access to a surfboard .
    And their future job prospects are still racially prejudiced with affirmative action kak once they enter the workforce .
    Brazil is a perfect example of what can be achieved by underprivileged surfers.
    Hopefully, In 10 years time or more,it won’t be a hard guess who will be representing rsa on the wct.

  2. Craig in San Diego
    3 March, 2016 at 5:47 pm · Reply

    Such a blessing to see all of the different teams coming together for a higher purpose and most excellent video @filmer_dude. Keep up the stoke!

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