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15 Reviews
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June 7, 2013
2 people found this review helpful

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June 7, 2013
2 people found this review helpful

I have been living on Oahu for a couple of years. I remember back in 2010 driving up through Wahiawa to the North Shore and noting how absolutely sketch the area was. The particular area was home to a nasty bar, liquor store, X rated picture shop, “lady” club, and a “house of ill repute.” Some people might consider that a wonderful example of civilization at its finest, but I personally thought the sight of it all was not cool.
I heard that this group, Surfing the Nations (STN), was going to try to move in and clean everything up. I had heard of plenty of these types of endeavors over the years and did not really think these STN guys had a chance.
I left for the war in Afghanistan, and when I came back, my reaction was, “what happened to Wahiawa?”

The place was completely transformed. STN somehow figured out a way to buy up all the nasty businesses and create a nice, regular piece of civilized Hawaii. The local kids were getting free school mentorship and being taught to swim and surf. Plus somebody convinced Walgreens and some other third party players to move in. The place no longer looks like a slum from a Banana Republic with the world’s oldest profession hanging out by the street corner. Upon this revelation, I decided that I was believer in STN. They had done what they set out to do, and it was good.

Now, it is only good if you happen to think the idea of the word’s second oldest profession hanging out on the street corner is bad. Some people might think that the loss of the take-their-clothes-off club, bar, liquor store, etc. is a bad thing. If you are the kind of person who misses the good old days when Wahiawa was known for being a happy place for perverts and drug addicts, by all means, please do not donate to STN. STN will use your money in a creative fashion to continue to ruin your ideal world of child slavery, drug addiction, and alcohol abuse.

Bottom line is that STN is a regular non-profit run by nice people with the intent of helping the community. Helping the community is something that nice people believe very strongly in doing. If you have a problem with the idea of nice people helping their community, please join the communist party USA and do not donate to STN, you have been warned.

While my personal, empirical experience with STN has been positive, some of the reviews on this site would lead one to believe that STN is the second coming of Charles Ponzi. I beg to differ; at least until proven otherwise. I just wish the reviewers: Tadd, ChrisR, and Jacob E, would provide additional information so that their concerns can be taken more seriously.

Here are my responses to each of them.

Tadd refers to STN as a “scam.” This is a very serious legal term that would mean the leadership of STN should be in prison. However, Tadd gives no proof for his serious, reputation-harming charge. If he had something to back up his claim, I would be inclined to believe him, but he does not give any references for farther investigations.
As for the licensed teachers thing, I have never heard of a non-profit after school program that requires a licensing procedure. And since a vast number of the volunteers have bachelor degrees (and beyond), I don’t see the point. Would you prefer STN to pack up and leave the poor kids with nothing?
The Starbucks thing is my favorite, the lame and bizarre attack on the quality of Surfers Coffee Bar did very little to convince me of the complaint that STN is a “scam.” Please use stronger arguments next time. ☺

ChrisR. says some intense stuff too. Personally, I don’t understand why it is a red flag to have a family highly involved in a cause they believe in. I would agree with him perhaps if he could show me that STN never does anything and the Bauers are making millions, but my own eyes tell me differently. My favorite part of the post is when he says, “I could write pages about it but I think my point is made.” Your point is not made, and the fact that you could not even provide a link to a Hawaii Star Advertiser story highlighting the abuse (perhaps because there is no such story) just makes you look intellectually retarded. Maybe you are actually Steve Jobs back from the dead and are brilliant; but please, try to back up your massive claims with more than 6 sentences.

Jacob E. actually wrote a review that had some content to it! Not that I agree with the content, but I thank him for at least attempting to make a coherent argument. His basic idea, as I understand it, is that STN is setup for the soul purpose of making money for the Bauers. I have been trying to do the research Jacob recommended (990’s, etc.) but have yet to find any of the extreme money making operations he describes. Besides highlighting some of the brilliant (and I think recommendable) financial systems used by STN, he also mentions to following. “With Marcus Oshiro sitting on the chair of Finance and Appropriations Commitee, the marriage of State, STNF, and Yamada was in line for the gentrification of Wahiawa, primarily the Ohai district.”

Oh yes, the conspiracy of gentrification! It is almost like they actually intend to follow through on their plans to improve Wahiawa! We must all start stocking up on liquor and X rated pictures immediately as these do gooders might actually end up doing what they have been saying they plan to do the entire time; make the world a better place. A big thanks to Jacob for agreeing with my central thesis, that STN is an organization dedicated to improving places like Wahiawa.

Bottom line is this is a wonderful organization that is actually, physically, making a difference in Hawaii. Some people don’t like positive change, but for the rest of us, STN is an awesome outfit!

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

July 31, 2012
2 people found this review helpful

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July 31, 2012
2 people found this review helpful

This organization taught me what it means to not only love the neighborhood but invest and transforms lives. By meeting basic needs and empowering people they show the community that it is possible for them to rise the challenges of life to impact their own neighborhood and families.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

July 31, 2012

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July 31, 2012

I have been at STN as a volunteer for almost 8 months now and I have a commitment to stay at least 6 more months. This place is an awesome place for reaching out and helping people in need. It is extremely rewarding and the entire concept helps you take a quantum leap in the personal growth. I can't do anything else but to recommend you to send in your application. Expect to help people, have lots of fun and to grow as a person!!

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

How did this volunteer experience make you feel?

Great!

February 26, 2012
2 people found this review helpful

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February 26, 2012
2 people found this review helpful

STN is one of the most outward reaching organisations I've been involved with. One of the main reasons I love volunteering here is that its focus is on people, and selfless acts of service. To give whether that be food, hope, love or a smile, is both healthy and fulfilling. Thank you STN

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

February 24, 2012

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Review from Guidestar
February 24, 2012

This organization has allowed me to thrive in my strengths and grow as a positive person in this world. By using my love to organize things, I have been able to describe and assign different jobs that are performed by the volunteers at the food distribution. I have also created maps of the different areas where the food is given out. The people I work with encourage, give generously, and see each individual around them by their potential. I truly enjoy working here because of this love and know I am growing into my potential as well.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2005

February 24, 2012
3 people found this review helpful

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February 24, 2012
3 people found this review helpful

Within in my personal experience, Surfing the Nations has been a great place for this generation to learn to serve others and feel supported in their gifts, passions and dreams. The Bauer Family have a huge heart for the community and have been very generous with their time and personal sacrifices to help those that are in need. I have been working with STN for the past 2 years and it has truly been the best job I have ever had.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

February 24, 2012
3 people found this review helpful

more

February 24, 2012
3 people found this review helpful

Surfing The Nations is an incredible organization dedicated to giving back and serving the needs of others. They are a self-less community that creates a place for young adults to build each other up and learn how to serve others, putting others' needs before their own. My family and I volunteer for this organization on a continual basis. We feel loved and encouraged by Surfing The Nations, and would encourage anyone to become involved in voluntary work with this organization.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

February 23, 2012

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February 23, 2012

Surfing the nations changes your life and helps you to grow and be able give back and be a part serve others and see peoples life be changed. You learn how to serve others with an unselfish heart. You develop your character and learn how to turn your fears into faith.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

February 23, 2012

more

Review from Guidestar
February 23, 2012

Surfing The Nations (STN) is awesome! I first volunteered for one of their international humanitarian trips during the summer to Indonesia. I can confidently say that this nonprofit has changed countless numbers of individuals and family lives. The reason I know is because my life has been changed and matured by serving others as a volunteer through STN. Not only do they have traditional ways of helping communities but creative "out of the box" ways like the Annual Freedom Surf Contest which is a drug free awareness event. Stoked on STN.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

My personal character development and my personal friends lives.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Figure out a way to help them market themselves better or fundraise for their community projects.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

What one change could this group make that would improve your volunteer experience?

I would say, offer a scholarship for some of their volunteer programs so at-risk youth or young adults could experience what I was able to experience.

Did your volunteer experience have an effect on you? (teaching you a new skill, or introducing new friends, etc.)

Showed me how to tangibly serve and love the surf/beach community. I also learned how to organize passionate young adults to use their gifts as a team.

How did this volunteer experience make you feel?

Sooo good.

February 23, 2012
1 person found this review helpful

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February 23, 2012
1 person found this review helpful

Surfing The Nations is one of the best organizations I have ever been involved with. Their open door, open arms approach to reaching out to the community has taught me how to see the needs of those around me and immediatly and practically meet those needs. I have never seen a community transform as quickly as Wahiawa and feel that it is an honour and a joy to be a part of this transformation.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

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