Costa Mesa Resident Vanessa Yeager is the Founder of Women Who Surf and Latinx Surf Club

Both clubs welcome communities for surfers across the world.
Photograph by Emily J. Davis

What made you start Women Who Surf?
I originally started the group with the intention of finding other women who surfed who are mothers. It started super small with 20 women from O.C. We’re at 10,000 women (on Facebook) now! It’s really cool to have women in the group from all ends of the globe. There are women who surf in cold places, like lakes and rivers in Germany. There’s so much diversity when it comes to surfing now. It’s like having this huge, sea sister community. It’s rad!

Surfer Bethany Hamilton recently promoted your group on her Instagram.
That was epic! She’s an inspiration to all the women who surf. We were super pumped that she gave us a shout-out.

What is something that you hope women will gain from being a part of this group?
Community. Just having a sense that we’re all in it together, that we all have the same values as surfers: trying to protect the environment, clean the beaches, promote kindness, and just being there for each other. We have women who are beginners, and they reach out saying, “This may be a silly question but …” and there’s always an older aunty in the group who’s willing to drop the wisdom the beginner needs.

Tell us about the Latinx Surf Club.
Being a Latina myself, I saw a lack of Latinx people surfing. I think it was because there wasn’t a community. It’s having that space, a place to be vulnerable and throw it out there, like, “Does anyone want to surf?” We’ve become a family … we’re doing things together, we’re getting outside. I’m a physical educator so being active is super important to me.

Join In!
Check out Women Who Surf and Latinx Surf Club on Facebook.

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