How This Young Woman Can Change Everything as Vanuatu’s First Female Shaper


img_7977-670x388A young girl took to the waves every day with her bruised and battered surfboard. She was told not to go into the ocean to play in the waves.

If she was a boy, things might have been easier. But she couldn’t change who she was and, more to the point, she didn’t want to. She often wondered about the board she tucked under her arm as she waded into the clear blue waters of Vanuatu. Where did it come from? Who made it? Why didn’t it sink? It took this little girl twelve years to understand the secrets of her first surfboard.

Resmah Kalotiti won’t tell you that she is the best female surfer in Vanuatu, but she is. At twenty years old, she has a unique style both in and out of the water. It’s the style of a trail blazer. It’s the style of someone who is quietly confident, not only with herself but in the universe playing out her destiny.

Resmah has just returned home to the palm tree lined shoreline she calls home from an opportunity that her younger self would never have imagined possible. Vanuatu relies on donated surf boards and a limited supply of second hand boards that constantly cycle throughout the surfing community. She believes that a shift is needed, putting the power of surfboard shaping into the hands of local Ni-Vanuatu surfers. Too often countries similar to Vanuatu are exploited, not only within the surfing sphere but in all areas of life. So Resmah wants to alter that paradigm, and learning from past experiences, take matters into her own hands, quite literally. Read more.