RYLEE: Is there anything
that you’re nervous about? JOHN: Nah, not really. RYLEE: There has to be something.
JOHN: Just the plane. RYLEE: The plane.
JOHN: Never been on one before. RYLEE: What do you think
it’s gonna feel like? JOHN: Rocky. RYLEE: Turbulence.
JOHN: Yeah. JOHN: I’m from Louisiana,
born and raised for a few years. I lived in Texas, I lived in Arizona,
Colorado, I think. I don’t know.
We passed by there a couple times. We lived on the streets
for some little bit of time, and then we found a shelter, and after that, DCS came,
and they took us. I was ten. RYLEE: One day he’s removed
and put into group homes with people he doesn’t know,
separated from all his connection, from all the people
that he loves and trusts. You want a window seat or a middle? JOHN: Middle. I want to sit
between y’all two, ’cause I’m gonna be squeezing
both y’all hands, so… Ah ha! # # DANIEL: Today we’re out here
just trying to help change one kid’s life. We flew John to San Diego
to give him a personalized surf lesson. What’s up, boss?
How you doin’, man? What’s up, what’s up? ROXANNE: Several months of planning
went into this to make it actually happen. DANIEL: Capital One Café in San Diego
works extremely closely with a nonprofit
called Urban Surf 4 Kids. I saw the passion in what they do,
and it was infectious. So I became a member
of the board of directors. ROXANNE: Urban Surf 4 Kids
provides surf therapy for children that are
in the foster care system. We really want to empower
and help children heal. So when you are feeling
absolutely at your happiest, I want you to let me know,
like a secret handshake. JOHN: I got one.
ROXANNE: Okay. JOHN: Like this.
ROXANNE: All right. One, two… JOHN: And then how about like this. Uh, uh, uh, uh. ROXANNE: Yeah! JOHN: All right, one more time. DANIEL: Most kids in the foster care system
don’t trust adults. The world kind of gave up on them. ROXANNE: Here you are. I want to introduce you to our team. Matthew is gonna be
the protector of the waters. There is something transformative
that happens to children when you take them
out of their element and you empower them. You’re overcoming some of their fears, exposing them to positive
and healthy relationships. MATTHEW: Pop up! Nice! Way to catch that wave. Are we ready to hit the water? JOHN: Yeah. ROXANNE: There’s something about being
in the ocean that is so therapeutic. When they’re in the water,
they can be free. It kind of rewires their brain, and they know that the waves
and the ocean really can dominate all of us. But they can become one with nature and not think about everything
that brought them to this moment, but they can think about, okay,
I need to catch this wave. I need to jump up, I need to trust
the person that’s with me, that they’re not gonna let me fall
or get crushed by a wave. # # That moment when they stand up
on the board for the first time, they want anyone to just look at them and share that moment with them. Once you experience
an opportunity like this, to conquer some of your fears, and then you find joy in it. You don’t drown, but instead
you ride on top of waves. DANIEL: Surfing teaches kids
how to trust themselves, which in turn, they trust other people. It’s transformative. ROXANNE: You’re still gonna have
hard times in life, but if you can ride through
those challenges, you’re gonna be okay. # # Sharing the stoke
with a kid out in the water is hard to describe. Because you know that you took away
all their pain for a few minutes, that you are helping them grow, and they know that you’re
there for them. You may not have known them
for months or weeks, but in that moment, you two are ohana,
the Hawaiian word for family. And that’s what these kids need. # #