A HANDICAP surf therapy center funded by a government Covid-19 support program is due to open in the Bay of St Ouen next month.
The project is undertaken by the ocean therapy charity Healing Waves, which offers islanders with disabilities the opportunity to enjoy the sea through a variety of adapted water sports.
The centre, which is being built in Le Braye car park, was made possible by a £411,000 grant from the government’s Fiscal Recovery Fund. It will serve as the charity’s permanent base, help store its adapted surfing equipment and provide disabled changing rooms for its members and the public.
Max Wiltshire, the charity’s co-founder, said they hoped to stage an official opening of the center in mid-August.
“Things are looking really good,” he said. “We have already started moving a lot of the equipment and everything is falling into place.
“We just did some touch ups before we can open next month.
“It looks really slick. Everyone who helped put things together, from the building itself to the signage, did a great job. It has an organic vibe and blends into the environment,” he added.
Mr Wiltshire said the center would provide a permanent home for all their adaptive equipment, which they previously had to store away from the beach.
“This will take Healing Waves to the next level and help us meet our ever-increasing demand for service. We have hundreds of athletes on our books and this is going to provide them with a space that meets their physical and emotional needs,” he said.
Last weekend the charity also took part in an episode of the popular BBC show Countryfile, which aired a two-part series featuring the island on national television.
In the episode, presenter Matt Baker was shown how Healing Waves runs some of his surf sessions.