Wahine surfers catch waves, fight sex abuse at China Uemura... - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Wahine surfers catch waves, fight sex abuse at China Uemura Surf Meet

China Uemura China Uemura

WAIKIKI (HawaiiNewsNow) - Dozens of female surfers -- from kids to grandmothers -- took to the waves in an annual surf meet that also supports a good cause.

The 15th Annual China Uemura Wahine Surfing Classic started Saturday at Kuhio Beach. Nearly 160 surfers are taking part in this weekend's contest.

Surf promoter and former champion longboarder China Uemura started the meet because at the time, there were no surf contests for women, including his daughter. He has been donating the proceeds to the Sex Abuse Treatment Center at Kapiolani Medical Center every year after he found out that some of the girls in the contest were abuse victims.

Those girls now credit him and his contest for saving their lives.

"I've seen these girls recently," Uemura said. "They're married, they have kids. And they told me, 'You know uncle, if you didn't do what you doing, I would've committed suicide.' And another girl said, 'Uncle, I was trying to commit suicide already.'

The meet also included booths staffed by treatment center volunteers.

Surfers also honored longtime Waikiki beach boy and musician Richard "Midnight" Kahihikolo, one of Uemura's best friends. Kahihikolo's ashes were scattered off Kuhio Beach before the meet, and his friends and relatives provided food and entertainment. 

The Wahine Surfing Classic will continue Sunday at Kuhio Beach.

Related site: The Sex Abuse Treatment Center

Copyright 2011 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.

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