When we first launched The Salty, we knew we wanted this blog to be a place for us to connect with fellow coconut junkies and beach-loving babes. More often than not, we’ve used The Salty to talk shop about beauty, fitness, health and food. But as we aim to keep our Kopari culture authentic, real, and well rounded, we’re taking time to discuss something a little more serious.
It’s been about two weeks since Hurricane Matthew hit, and though the headlines about this devastating natural disaster have quieted down, the truth is that the people of Haiti need help. Kopari co-founder, James, came to feel closely connected to the situation in Haiti through his friend Jon Rose, who is currently in Haiti helping those affected, through his charitable organization Waves For Water. In short, Jon’s organization works as such: people can make monetary donations via the organization’s website, choosing the exact area they’d like to donate to, and every penny goes right to the source.
Jon has been dedicating his life to picking up the pieces of places affected by catastrophe and bringing clean water to areas that need it most since 2009. It was in 2012 that he and James met by fate. Both were in New York helping to clean up in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, and it was Jon who helped James get gas, food and other necessities to his hometown of Rockaway Beach. James was immediately taken aback by Jon’s generosity toward complete strangers.
However, Jon took it even a step further when he pulled James aside and asked, “JB, what’s the deal with all the groms? All the kids whose parents won’t be able to replace their surfboards and wetsuits that got destroyed in the hurricane?” As a professional surfer himself, Jon felt obligated to give back to the young surfers in the Rockaway community. After doing some digging, James gave Jon a list of twenty kids who loved to surf, but were unable to replace their gear. Within days, each of the kids had brand new Hurley wetsuits and surfboards. To this day, that story remains to be one of James’ favorite about Jon. In James’ own words, Jon is “a man for others.”
Currently, Jon and his team are in Haiti, providing relief in the wake of Hurricane Matthew. Though Kopari normally donates $1 from every purchase to the Philippines (we chose the Philippines as it’s the source of all of our coconuts) via Waves For Water, we’ve also decided to make a donation to Haiti. We’d also like to ask, if you feel inclined, to please make a donation to Haiti via Waves For Water. This small organization is making big waves, and as we’re close to the heart of it, we can assure you that every bit of your donation will be used to change the lives of those affected.
Photos By: Dylan Gordon