Ocean Mind Inc

Ocean Mind Inc is a not for profit charity that provides therapeutic surf courses for young people who are experiencing difficulties in their lives. We use a mix of surf therapy and mentoring to create a therapeutic environment for young people to challenge themselves, learn new skills and develop and strengthen relationships with family friends and the broader community.

Our surfing courses are evidence-based and designed to help clients to improve their self-confidence, resilience and motivation. Projects are delivered by our fantastic team of volunteer surf mentors, and overseen by a qualified youth worker and surf instructor.

All of our staff, paid and voluntary, have undertaken training around our participants needs.


Listing details

Postal address: 71 Great Ocean Road, Torquay 3228 VIC Australia
Organisation type: Community group or not-for-profit – incorporated
Affiliations: Go Ride a Wave Spring Creek Community House Give Where You Live Surf Coast Shire Council.
Languages spoken: English
Service area: City of Greater Geelong, Surf Coast
Website: www.oceanmind.org.au
Facebook: www.facebook.com/oceanmindinc

Contact: Rachael Parker
Mobile: 0422 703 592
Email: [email protected]

Referral: To refer a client please go to www.oceanmind.org.au/refer Referrals must come from a professional working with the young person.
Eligibility: Young people aged 8 - 18 years at risk/experiencing mental health issues, social isolation and/or with a disability.
Volunteer opportunities: Yes - We recruit surf mentors to volunteer on the program to help the participants 1:1 in the surf.
Wheelchair accessible? No
Public transport access: No
Additional information:

Ocean Mind Inc. aims to give young people the skills, confidence and self-efficacy they need to achieve their goals, no matter what additional challenges they face. We recognise that every young person is different and each responds to challenges differently, but with the right assistance and support they can do it.

The intervention uses local surfers to help young people reduce anxiety and improve their emotional health. It is a simple but powerful formula that nurtures young people and creates a safe environment for young people to challenge themselves, create new friendships and develop new skills.

We train local surfers to work with clients and teach them to surf. The sessions are delivered by a mix of paid staff and volunteer surf-mentors who work in partnership with established surf schools.

Some of our surf mentors started out as clients themselves.

Most importantly, our sessions are free of any pressure to succeed – clients work at their own pace and achieve their own goals. They can work 1:1 with their mentor, or get more involved with the group. Our ethos is to be totally client-led.

The role of the surf mentor is to encourage and enable, not to push clients towards an arbitrary goal.

We have found that this approach reduces anxiety and allows clients to feel empowered, enabling them to overcome challenges and develop a sense of pride in their achievements.

We take referrals from professionals working with vulnerable children and young people, and also run private lessons for charities and companies. Regular referrers include schools, child protection services, mental health services, GPs, family support services, counselors and children’s charities.