Laru Beya Collective is a non-profit organization offering free surf lessons and water safety education to Black and Brown communities in NYC’s Queens borough. At Rockaway Beach, “environmental racism prevents access and comfortability: from lack of protection from lifeguards to poor beach maintenance, not to mention a stark wealth inequality along the channel.” This, coupled with a generational fear of water apparent in Black communities, makes learning to swim and enjoying the beach particularly difficult for many BIPOC individuals—in fact, Black people drown at a rate 1.5 times higher than white people. This collective seeks to change that. Under the pioneering guidance of the Laru Beya family, young people of color are not obtaining better access to the beach, but are also creating a new generation of surfers. Find out more about their work on Teen Vogue.
Image courtesy of Kat Sloosky