Mark Skinner of the Board Meeting surf charity which will auction some great gear at its annual corporate teams event at Kawana SLSC today.
Mark Skinner of the Board Meeting surf charity which will auction some great gear at its annual corporate teams event at Kawana SLSC today. John McCutcheon

Board Meeting surf event has an eye for more than waves

IF There has ever been great waves for the annual Board Meeting corporate teams' challenge no one who has competed can remember them.

But then great waves and even who wins is not the point despite the bribes regularly passed to the all-female judging panel.

Started in 2005, the event has raised more than $750,000 since, money that is quickly distributed to help families on the Sunshine Coast with special needs children under 18 who have exhausted all other avenues of funding to buy medical and learning aides or equipment that will improve the overall life of the child.

To date that's included mobility equipment like wheelchairs and walking frames, seating and standing apparatus, specialised bedding, orthopaedic products, learning technology and software, safe play and sensory equipment, lifting equipment, feeding aides, care dogs, special therapy, emergency respite care and in-home modifications for improved care.

Chapters have also opened on the Gold Coast and Northern Rivers of NSW.

Founding committee member Mark Skinner laughs at the prospect of another year of abysmal waves.

He's more excited about the entry of 36 teams making it one of the biggest events in years, than the surf which has, Mark says, crept up in size to a foot.

"We wouldn't be holding it November if we were chasing great surf,'' Mark said.

There's talk of a surfing dog being included as an entry in one of the teams, some of which will be jam-packed with surfing talent capable of making the most of conditions which will turn ugly quickly with a predicted north easterly wind shift.

What the event is good at is running through two rounds of competition involving four surfers at a pace quick enough to get off the beach and into the Kawana SLSC by midday.

That's where the real action starts at 12.30pm with an auction of everything from surf boards and stand-up paddle boards and surfing memorabilia donated by local businesses and stars of the surf like Julian Wilson, Dimity Stoyle and Keely Andrew.

On hand also will be some of the families who have been recipients of the Board Meeting's support.

Their stories are both harrowing and uplifting and highlight just how much change a little help can bring to people's lives.

Auction items include signed Julian Wilson posters, surf boards from Beck, Firewire, Keely Andrew and Mitch Surman and Ed Hooper, a SUP from Global Surf Industries, some classic Ric Griffin "Murph the Surf" memorabilia from the early 1960s and everything in between from camping tents to luxury accommodation holiday packages.

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