If you've followed us for a while, you've probably heard us talk about the Jordan Project. Jordan Kelly was a young surfer, skater and artist who tragically died several years ago. For years Jordan had dreamed of attending a class here at Grain and when he passed, his mom Karen, without flinching, decided to raise funds to send other young people here to fulfill their dreams.
This project has grown to become something much greater then simply a scholarship. It's broadened our family and made our surfing community feel much more tight-knit in so many ways.
Jordan's mom Karen received submissions from young people all around the world. From Karen:
"When the idea of creating a scholarship for a class at Grain - as a way to celebrate Jordan's life - was first proposed, it instantly felt right. Jordan's gift would allow others who shared his passion for surfing and woodworking to realize a dream of their own. So we began with the planning, and the planning led to the fundraising, and the fundraising ultimately led us to where we are today, announcing the recipient of the first Jordan Project scholarship.
Right from the start, we focused mainly on the joy of the individual who would attend Grain. We never entertained the idea (or wanted to admit to ourselves) that there would be a difficult downside. As the applications began rolling in, it was soon apparent that the selection process was not only going to be hard, but also next to impossible. We met couples in rented motorhomes touring the East coast in search of tomorrow's next wave, a fiancee wanting only for her future husband, a teen sculpting surf figurines, young men and women building amazing boards of all shapes and sizes crafted from cardboard to hardwood. We read lyrics, cherished thoughts of pay-it-forward videos, listened to music and viewed photographic wonders. It was ALL heartfelt, and it was amazing. Each entry brought memories of Jordan and for that we could never thank you enough.
So what do you do with your inaugural selection when the guidelines are to select ONE individual out of all the deserving. You pick TWO, of course. Why not? We are sure Jordan would not flinch at us bending the rules, a bit. So without any further ado, we would like to extend our deep gratitude to all of you who took the time to enter and share your hearts and lives with us. A huge thanks to the fine folks at Grain (our adopted family) for helping us make this dream become a reality. And to all of Jordan's family and friends who keep him alive in their hearts and minds everyday, thank you."
And the scholarship winners are: Beckley S. from New Castle NH and and Steve R. from New South Wales Australia. Can't wait to have you both here next month. Please keep an eye on the Jordan Project page on our site. We'll be announcing next year's scholarship details early in 2013.
[caption id="attachment_10021" align="alignleft" width="685" caption="Beckley is all smiles knowing he\'ll be building his own board in just a few weeks."][/caption]
[caption id="attachment_10022" align="alignleft" width="768" caption="Steve looks just as happy."][/caption]