RIVER is her Middle Name: Jasi K
She inspired Chapter 6: A Thousand Stars in the Sky
When we hear something like “Mischief is his middle name” we know that is just a way of saying he is full of mischief. In the case of Jasi K., her middle name really IS River. And she has lived up to the name her entire life. From teaching herself to swim at age 3 to being the youngest to standup paddle, participate in prone paddling events (and winning) to whitewater in every way possible (including swimming) she IS a river girl.
11 year old 6th grader, Jasi, dreams of being a pro surfer one day – but TODAY she is a BLUE LIFE SUPER HERO. She wants to work on living a life that celebrates an awareness of her impact on the environment. One way of doing this is by only using biodegradable sunscreen and hair products. Picking up trash wherever she sees it (in and out of the water) is another. Plastic bottles and single use plastic make her very upset. Often when people are rafting or paddling on the water, a water bottle can float away. For that reason sometimes she doesn’t even bring a bottle. She uses a device called the Life Straw in rivers and lakes. It has a filter that allows one to drink through the straw directly from the fresh water.
During the summers, Jasi’s mom, Jen K., has coached and nurtured a club called the Bend Youth Brigade. Kids learn river safety, get to know every aspect of the rivers and lakes. They standup paddle, surf and boogie board the “wave” in town and learn to paddle a 6-man outrigger canoe (OC6). This August the Kihei Charter School Tiger Sharks outrigger team will visit Bend. The kids have to earn their experience in Bend by participating in all school fundraising, Luau’s, the OC6 paddle team, and by keeping good grades. Jasi is learning a hula to perform in March at their big fundraiser on Maui.
Jasi earned the opportunity to go to Maui for the 2019 spring semester. She is being home schooled while she is there and is participating in OC6 with the Kehei Charter School Tiger Sharks. She will try to surf as many days as she can and is taking lessons from Maui Surfer Girls. Being coached is a great opportunity for her dream of being a pro surfer, like her hero Bethany Hamilton (from the movie Soul Surfer) one day. During her semester on Maui Jasi will also play volleyball, touch Rugby and paddle OC6.
While on Maui, Jasi is writing in her BLUE LIFE JOURNAL every day. Not only does this keep her focused on gratitude, creating amazing days and blue life actions, it will be a valued memento of her time on Maui. Being mindful is something she is practicing, embracing the beauty, nature and wonderful marine life. Jasi shared, “We have seen so many animals in our first week here and I am naming them all. We counted 30 sea turtles on the beach at Ho’okipa! We see sea turtles every time we are in the ocean. We met a large sea lion at Launiupoko today and I named him Phillip. We had a cattle egret follow us home, which I named Simon, that ate lizards out of the bushes the entire way!”
Jasi inspired Chapter 6: A Thousand Stars in the Sky and will be featured in more upcoming chapters. She asked that her character be named “Bethany”, after her favorite movie “Soul Surfer” and real life pro/role-model Bethany Hamilton.
When we asked Jasi to share some reasons she wants to lead a Blue Life and protect the environment she answered like this:
I love animals and want to protect their home. My own animals are a spoodle named Bear (poodle/spaniel) and two lop eared bunnies, Daisy and Stormy. I love water sports from rivers to oceans. I want to continue to play in the water my whole life! It is important to make choices that are good for the water – rivers, lakes, streams and the ocean. I never feel so alive as when I am in the ocean! I feel that the ocean is my home. I will love and protect it.