Surfers battle legend race for cash

Professional surfer Joel Parkinson (pictured in action) will be taking on the Molokai 2 Oahu paddleboard world championships to raise money for a new school in the Mentawai Islands.

And Singapore schoolteacher, Aussie Jackson English, who is SurfAid’s biggest individual fundraiser, will also be paddling for SurfAid in this year’s gruelling 51.5 km race, which will be contested in late July.

Parkinson will be raising money to help build a new school in Masokut village, on Sipora Island. The former village was wiped out by the tsunami and, with the help of SurfAid, the Masokut community has since rebuilt their village on higher ground.

However the children, aged seven to ten, are being taught in a one-room timber shack that has plastic sheeting for walls.

SurfAid schools programme manager Milton Brown said the fund-raising target is $25,000, of which nearly half has been raised.

• The mission of SurfAid, a non-profit humanitarian organisation, is to improve the health, well-being and self-reliance of people living in isolated regions connected to us through surfing.

SurfAid’s health programs involve education in nutrition, hygiene, healthy environments and disease prevention - including mosquito net distribution.

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