Summer 2015 won’t be the same..

Aloha, I am so very sorry to say we are not holding the OGP surf camps this year. I hope you will please stay connected to us on Facebook for updates and other community/ocean girl project events this fall. I want to make sure and send a BIG Mahalo to the parents and ocean girls from past surf camps for staying in touch and mahalo to all those offering to volunteer this year! I greatly appreciate your understanding and loving support. Love to all our awesome volunteers, surf on ocean girls!

Much Aloha, Colleen Kudo

OGP Founder & Surf Camp mama.

ps..though we are not holding the week-long camps I have been stoked to be surfing with OGP surf camp graduates, if you would like to join us, you can write me: , message in our ocean girl project Facebook page or I will sea ya in the ocean soon!


July Ocean Girl Camp

We had an AMAZING week of learning, art, surfing, laughter and play at our July 7-11 Ocean Girl Project surf camp! BIG Mahalo to all the AWESOME volunteers, parents and supporters. Thanks to you, everything we did was safe, meaningful,we appreciate your generous gift of time and for being so helpful.


Day one: Nerves!! Always the hardest day, meeting new people, not sure what to expect, finding our way. We start with a talk on ocean and surf safety and the girls learned S.O.A.K.

We played games and began to loosen up with our new names.. apple, mango, wolf, owl, sushi, sea star, Faith, and Jeannie.


Jeannie Chesser brought the girls Roxy hats

Awesome caps, Sun care is fun care, girls don’t forget your sunscreen!


We went into the calm ocean and participated in safe water challenges like swimming to Faith ( perfect name!). We held buddy contests, floated and jumped around. Everyone did GREAT! We have a bunch of beautiful ocean girls who love the ocean.  Next: Begin surf and surfboard skills, discuss tides, surfing etiquette and safety.

SurfCo Hawaii donated surf safe Pro Teck fins, nose and tail guards for our camp surfboards. Surf Tech donated use of epoxy boards that small hands could carry.

Uncle Doug came each day and drove the ocean girls to our surf spot in the cool VW surf van. GREAT FIRST DAY, surf was fun, girls were safe, waves plenty and we all laughed and learned a lot.  Everyone tired, hungry and stoked.


What to do if you find yourself in a rip current

The best thing to do is learn to spot rip currents and avoid them. However, if you do find yourself in a rip current, remember the following. It could save your life!

  • Don’t fight the current – Conserve energy, keep calm, float, breathe, don’t panic, and wave for help
  • Swim out of the current, then to shore – Swim out of the current in a direction following the shoreline. When out of the current, swim at an angle–away from the current–towards shore.
  • If you can’t escape, float or tread water – You can easily float in the current, there is no undertow.
  • If you need help, call or wave for assistance – If there is large surf or shoreline hazards, wave your hands for help and wait for assistance

How to Avoid and Survice Rip Currents

Diagram courtesy NOAA’s National Weather Service



Morning started with Miss Sarah leading us in a wonderful energizing ocean girl yoga session, next we created a nature mandala and decided our ocean girl intentions for the week. The girls started their marine debris learning and art with Jan and Loke.  Surfing on day two, waves and wind are up, everyone a little jostled, we are sore and tired but we stay stoked!!!! #oceangirlproject


Surf bigger and wild so we learned SUP at the park. Shannon started our morning with food, yummy. She taught the girls how to make healthy snacks. Jeannie came and taught the girls Stand Up Paddle. She also taught the girls how to make reusable bags out of t-shirts and Shannon stayed to help. Re-purpose and our responsible intentions! SUP use donated by SURF TECH!!


My surfing experience with ocean girl project. By Carly S, age 11

Carly, Ocean Girl Project Inspiration!

Ocean Girl Carly, living the dream, inspiring others.

From the time I first went in salt water when I was 8 months old, I loved it.

I always loved the ocean and have been involved with water sports for a long time. In second grade one of my friends recommended a movie for me called Soul Surfer. It sounded interesting so my Dad and I got it at Target.

After watching the movie I was amazed by this girl named Bethany Hamilton who lost her arm in a shark attack and gained enough strength to surf again and eventually become world-famous – not only for her surfing, but also her acts of charity and bravery. After I saw this movie I was so inspired that I wanted to learn how to surf, and get to see Hawaii one day.

This was a huge dream of mine that came true. In the summer I was going into fifth grade I got the opportunity to go to Hawaii. I was ecstatic! I had never been there and I had tried surfing a few times at beach in N.J.

Traveling to Hawaii from New Jersey was a long flight. The first week of my trip was in Kauai. The second week I went to Honolulu.

That’s where I met my favorite surf coach Colleen Kudo! She taught me for three days through the ocean girl project program. She taught me some amazing things about surfing. It was a blast to be out in the water with her every morning. When you get on the surfboard you are hooked. I was very sad to see my opportunity end but it was a very good one.

Surfing is a wonderful sport and I got to learn a lot about it thanks to Ocean Girl Project.

When I left Hawaii I took lots with me. I got to know the ocean better, and myself. I also think it’s important to remember that the Ocean Girl Project not only focuses on surfing, but also the health of the ocean and the environment. If we don’t take care of this, we won’t have the oceans to enjoy. The Ocean Girl Project also gives kids who are less fortunate the chance to try out surfing. Colleen has an amazing organization and I hope someday to return to Hawaii to help out with one of projects!

Carly surfing Jersey!

Still surfing, love the ocean girl project sticker, yahoo!

Mahalo Carly for sharing this awesome story, you did such a great job!!!  We would love to have you return as a junior volunteer to camp, anytime! Keep the stoke, charge those waves and always keep that loving joyful spirit shining.

With our love and gratitude, Colleen and all the ocean girls here in Hawaii!

Jellyfish Arrival Calendar Forecast for Hawaii Beaches 2014 Be Ocean Safe!

Ocean Girls & Guys, Ocean Lovers and Beginner Surfers 2014!

Miss_faryn_ocean_girl_project_surfstainable_debris_in_a_bottle At Ocean Girl Project Surf Camps we learn what it means to be a steward of the ocean and we surf a lot too!

Surfers are in the ocean pretty much every chance they get, experiencing,  interacting, watching out for each other, well you get the idea.  Being a surfer or water person you form a very personal relationship with the ocean and nature, you are not only observing and appreciating, you are now a part of it all.

Starting with this first educational focused article and continuing into next month, we will share useful bits of simple ocean/surf/nature information, hopefully you will learn something  or can pass on to someone who is a new surfer or ocean lover.  Mahalo! Sea ya in the water…One Love, all creatures. Ocean Girl Project Team Volunteers!

sign-oceangirlproject-new-surfers-Jellyfish Box Jellyfish aka Jellies –  know when they are expected! 2014 below and online jelly fish calendar

The box jellyfish is most commonly found on Hawaii’s leeward (west) and south shores. Their arrival on Hawaii’s beaches is quite predictable. They usually arrive around 9-12 days after a full moon (but occasionally they have been observed on off-cycle days as well). This is when warning signs are usually posted on many Oahu beaches (warning signs are generally only posted on popular beaches).

Don’t swim at remote and unguarded beaches for your own safety. There are many other ocean hazards besides jellyfish, including strong currents, rip tides, sharp coral, etc. Similar to a jellyfish, the Portuguese man-of-war also causes a painful sting. It has a purplish body and is commonly found on windward (east) shores as the prevalent northeastern trade-winds blow these creatures close to shore.

If you see a jellyfish on the beach, don’t touch it as its tentacles can cause a painful sting even if the animal is dead. Keep children away from beached jellyfish. If you get stung, see a lifeguard for first aid.  For more serious cases or if you feel unwell, call 911 immediately, jellyfish stings may cause an anaphylactic shock or in some cases even death.

Continue reading

Giving back to our youth, Waianae ocean educational outreach day

We had an awesome afternoon doing an ocean educational outreach presentation for a youth group last Saturday.  We started with a tag team ice breaker-chaser (that cracked everyone up).  Ocean Girl volunteers brought pocket-sized sustainable fish guides for each youth, we learned: correctly ID fish you have caught,  legal-sustainable size,  the seasonal times to eat or throw back.. We discussed many ways to live sustainable and care for our island and ocean.  The kids also got a terrific demonstration and lesson on how to throw net. The sharing, caring, and cultural connection:  powerful, inspiring, & uplifting!


Mahalo to ALL the wonderful volunteers from the youth programs who gave their time and even brought goodies for the kids.  You are creating positive waves in our community!

Ocean Girl Project Gives back

For us, community is not just a place, but a way of life.  We strive to instill that sense of community and island values in all that we do. We are a force for positive action – bringing together volunteers, team members, clients, and the community; we know we can contribute every day. We believe it is our kuleana (responsibility) to do all that we can and this, truly will be our legacy.

Gratitude to Ocean Girl Project volunteers : Anne, Lucas, Luna, Sarah, Kaily and Brian!! Can’t wait for the next one!!

If you are an organization or school serving youth in our community, we’d love to introduce you to Ocean Girl Project girls surf camps and educational ocean outreach, email:

An Ocean Girl (or Boy)actively takes responsibility to malama (take care) of our ocean, aina and herself.-oceangirl Maddie-

The Grip of the Rip | Ocean Girl Project| Ocean News | Rip Currents

Rip Currents // Hawaii

Rip Currents // Hawaii

What is a rip current?

Rip currents are channeled currents of water flowing away from shore. They generally begin from the shoreline and head through the surf zone – past the line of breaking waves. Some people mistakenly call this undertow. It is important to understand that there is no undertow, just water moving away from the beach.

How do rip currents form?

Rip currents are created by wind and waves. Waves that break over shallow sandbars and reefs push water towards the shore. Water builds up near shore and must get back out to sea. This pressure creates concentrated rivers of water to move away from the beach to calmer deeper water. The water forced away from shore is otherwise known as a rip current.

rip current

How to spot a rip current:

Look for waves breaking over shallow reefs and/or sandbars. Then look for deeper channel(s) without waves breaking. This is where water will be moving away from shore. Rip currents will look similar to a moving river with little chops breaking against the flow of water. The bigger the breaking waves, the more water trapped, the stronger the rip.  LOOK FOR STRONG CURRENT BEACH SIGNS! Check your local forecast.

Exercise caution if you see the following:

  • a channel of churning, choppy water
  • an area with a noticeable difference in color
  • a line of foam, seaweed, or debris moving steadily out to sea
  • and/or a break in the incoming wave pattern

If you get caught in one:

  • Don’t Fight The Rip Current – Conserve energy, keep calm, float, breathe, don’t panic, and wave for help
  • Go With The Flow – You can easily float in the current, there is no undertow. Allow the current to take you away from the beach. In weaker rips, swim parallel to the shore until the current has completely relaxed. Otherwise, the current will eventually release you offshore. Once this happens swim perpendicular then at an angle and towards the beach
  • Wait For Help – If there is large surf or shoreline hazards, wave your hands for help and wait for assistance

If you see someone caught in a rip current, DO NOT try to rescue them yourself, instead:

  • Get a lifeguard or call 911.
  • Yell instructions to remain calm.
  • If possible, throw a life preserver or floatation device.
  • Try to keep a visual until help arrives.

These things may help you save a life.

The ocean is a source of fun and excitement, but always be aware and careful of hazards that exist. Only swim at lifeguard protected beaches. Before your next trip to the beach, know how to spot a rip current and how to break the grip of the rip.

Did you know?

About one person, on average, annually in the United States will die from a shark bite. 100+ people drown in rip currents each year.

via The Grip of the Rip | Ocean News | Ocean Today.


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