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People Taking Action: Local high school teacher offers surf camp to kids in need!

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Posted at 8:40 PM, Jun 09, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-10 12:35:59-04

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Heading down the hallways of Salem High School, we were looking to surprise a special teacher with the help of the school's principal, Leeane Turnbull. She leans into his room first.

"Mr. Borte, you have a minute? [We've] got some people here to see you."

Jason Borte was trying to figure out what was going on... why was News 3 in his classroom? He would soon find out.

He's been at Salem High School for three years teaching technology foundation, but even when he's not at Salem High, he just heads to a different classroom to teach surfing. He's offering up a surf camp later this month to kids in need, and he's got a few spaces left.

"I do it anyway as my job in the summertime for paying customers, and it's just - there are so many kids who don't have that opportunity and that are within distance of the ocean, and they're not able to experience it," he explained.

Borte wants to change that, so he started a GoFundMe to raise money so he could offer the camp for free.

"So, you guys coming to help get the word out is awesome because if there are families in need who want their kids to learn how to surf, this is their opportunity to do it," he said.

Not only that, he founded Wave Warriors Surf Camp for injured soldiers; plus, he has conducted free camps for foster children.

For those reasons, News 3 presented Jason with a People Taking Action award along with a $300 Visa gift card from our community partner, Southern Bank.

Jason is grateful for the recognition and hopes it will help him reach others to share his passion of surfing.

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"Before I taught, I was traveling as a pro surfer - as a writer and stuff - so I've gotten the opportunity to see the world. And being able to share the experience of surfing and hopefully some of these kids will get into it and you know, realize what's out there and pursue it like I have, and just being able to see that and make that happen is just really rewarding," Borte said.

That surf camp for kids in need begins June 21. For more information, click here.

To nominate someone for a People Taking Action Award, click here.