Panama 2017-06-12T03:36:21+00:00

Panama is distinct for its rich culture, unique geography, and economy. It has a wonderful sense of being preserved and under the tourist radar.

Culturally Panama is diversely represented by eight indigenous groups comprising 5 percent of the population, an Afro-Antillean population representing 15 of the population, and a large population of immigrants who now call Panama home for its beauty and economic advantages and opportunities.

Geaographically Panama resembles the shape of a snake with the unique orientation of having a coastline to the north, The Caribbean Sea, and to the south, The Pacific Ocean. The S shaped isthmus is divided into 9 provinces and is bordered to the west by Costa Rica and Columbia to the east. In the east is Panama’s largest city, Panama City, and its crown economic jewel, The Panama Canal. The Bocas del Toro province shares a border with Costa Rica and within this province is the island archipelago of Bocas del Toro. This archipelago is Give & Surf’s home as well as large populations of Afro-Panamanians, Ngobe Bugle Indians, and visiting tourists.

Economically Panama City and the rest of Panama are heading in two very opposite directions. In 1999 America handed over the rights of the Panama Canal and since then Panama City has been flooded with large development projects, international investment, and most recently the expansion of the canal and a new metro system. When visiting you will be extremely surprised to see just how sprawling and developed a city of only 1.2 million is. The less recognizable face of Panama for tourists are the individuals we as an organization share experiences with daily.

The communities Give & Surf support are part of the largest indigenous group in Panama, The Ngöbe–Buglé. The Ngöbe speak Ngäbere as well as Spanish and generally practice subsistence agriculture in areas of the comarca. Being that the communities we work with do not have a lot of land the families are supported through jobs with local foreign owned businesses as well as fishing and farming. The community infrastructure and educational support provided by the government to this region is significantly worse than the more populated areas of Bocas del Toro and Panama. Due to the lack of government support and opportunities 90% of the Ngöbe population live in extreme poverty and nearly 100% of children under the age of 5 are malnourished. The lack of government provided school has also resulted in only 18% of children ages 15-19 continuing education past 6th grade and a 55% literacy rate. For these reasons Give & Surf aims to improve the education and lives of those children and community members we are so closely connected to. 

Girls of WOMP, Women's Outreach Mentorship Program, taking the podium during the inaugural COPA Féria Del Mar hosted by @bocaspaddlingcluband and held this past weekend in epic 🚣conditions! #wompbocas #giveandsurfWhat a beautiful day spent in Old Bank with the community thanks to program director Zuleika and her band of supporters! 
The day was presented with ❤️ to raise awareness of bullying and support the Aguilas Doradas, a character building program focused around expression and creativity! #giveandsurfVolunteer Story Time PART 3 with Taylor Love, @taylorklove, from the USA and volunteer from July 15th-August 15th 
What would you say to someone considering coming down here? 
GO! It’s a professional organization that truly serves the local people. The staff here are true leaders in the community! #giveandsurfVolunteer Story Time PART 2 with Taylor Love, @taylorklove, from the USA and volunteer from July 15th-August 15th 
Most memorable experience?

Too many favorite memories! My favorite was reading this animal book to the kids in BR. We all acted out every animal and I laughed until it hurt. #giveandsurfVolunteer Story Time PART 1 with Taylor Love, @taylorklove, age 27 from the USA and volunteer from July 15th-August 15th 
What drove you to come here?

I was looking for a volunteer opportunity in Central America. I found Give and Surf on the internet, did some YouTube research and decided I would love to volunteer with this fantastic organization. #giveandsurfNever lose touch with your inner child, the innocent part of you that thinks you will pop every bubble in sight! @sunshineheroesfoundation #giveandsurf ...
#panama #bocasdeltoro #giveback  #nonprofit #nonprofitlife #nonprofitorganization #volunteerlife #volunteer #volunteerabroad #explore #surf #surfing #travel #grateful #givethanks #gratitudeKids discovering happiness in education is an everyday affair at Old Bank's community center thanks to our dear partners and supporters of @sunshineheroesfoundation who not only funded the build of this beautiful center, but also the staff and program expenses to run a summer school, after school program, and more that never existed before a year and a half ago! #gratitude #giveandsurf¡Bailando! Gotta get the wiggles out somehow with these energetic pre-schoolers💃🏼❤️❤️#panama #bocasdeltoro #giveback #nonprofit 
#nonprofitlife #volunteerlife #volunteer #grateful #surfing #surf #nonprofitorganization #travel #explore #givethanks #volunteerabroadSending immense gratitude to Rose Johnson, @rose_grace2406, an intern this past summer who worked her tail off with Emilie, @emjstreet, to develop programs for our new community center on Isla Cristobal! 
She has this to say to anyone considering a volunteer or internship opportunity with us!

That it is an unbelievable experience and unlike most volunteer experiences and internships, Give and Surf allows you to have a deeper connection with the community. As an intern I was pleased with the fact that Give and Surf gave interns real responsibility which I think is rare within the internship world. Give and Surf is also a lot of fun and Bocas is a great place to work and play. #giveandsurfProud to announce that we have co-created ▿INDIGO BENEFIT FESTIVAL▿@indigo_festival a day of music, art, yoga, documentary, and more to celebrate life and raise money for education in Bocas Del Toro! 
The day features a gang of amazing musical performances and creatives from near and far who will convene on Encinitas to celebrate life under the Indigo sky!

Music Lineup ↠↠↠↠↠
Rambo []
Feather and Dot [@featherdotmusic] 
The Verigolds [@theverigolds]
Todo Mundo [@todomundoband]
The Moves Collective [@themovescollective]
Wicked Monk [@wicked_monk]
Andre Gallardo [@renchmonkey]
Grayson Schreiner [@thegreatsilversun] ▵Yoga and Market Lineups to come!▵ Made possible and supported by our favorites at
Culture Brewing [@culturebrewingco]
Eve Encinitas [@eveencinitas]
Ironsmith Coffee Roasters [@ironsmithcoffee]
Harvest Peace [@harvestpeace]
Head over to Facebook and search events for Indigo Benefit Festival or visit website

Don't be there, be here! #indigofestivalFeeling the stoke last month at Bluff with Alonso, an active, surf stoked member of our SOMP: Surf Outreah Mentorship Program led by none other than @guacamole13 #giveandsurfClass 🤡 ing around with our Bahia Roja preschoolers is a volunteer favorite! Make sure to express yourself and the infinite capacity of your imagination through humor this Monday! #giveandsurf

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