How local surf champ Alfonso Peters used surfing to escape the streets

Local surf instructor Alfonso Peters is becoming the role model for vulnerable youth in Cape Town that he never had.

The 28-year-old is a surf instructor at Surf Emporium Muizenberg and has been surfing for over 12 years.

Peters represented South Africa at the World Longboard Championships in March he won the prestigious Tiger’s Milk Winter Classic last year.

Peters had a tough childhood, and moved from Mitchell's Plein to Manenberg when he was young after the death of his father.

It's tough and there's a lot of poverty. Living there [in Manenberg] I didn't have hope and dreams.

Alfonso Peters, Head coach at Surf Emporium

I wanted to be a gangster myself... I nearly went that route.

Alfonso Peters, Head coach at Surf Emporium

As troubled teenager he says he would run away from home, get in trouble for theft. He would later live on the streets and in shelters on and off for eight years.

After he got in trouble with the police, a social worker invited him to a camp that changed the trajectory of his life.

When he went back to school and moved to live in Muizenberg with his social worker, Ryan, Peters came across a pamphlet offering a free surf programme.

I was absolutely hooked... It gave me something to wake up to in the morning. It was my passion and kept me sane.

Alfonso Peters, Head coach at Surf Emporium

Peters says riding waves brings him total freedom to express himself and "leave his problems on the shore".

He reflects on how he started teaching surfing, how he began competing at a professional level and offered advice for young kids needing inspiration.

Take a listen to his moving journey:


Recommended

by NEWSROOM AI

CapeTalk welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

  • Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
  • Sexism
  • Homophobia
  • Religious intolerance
  • Cyber bullying
  • Hate speech
  • Derogatory language
  • Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the CapeTalk community a safe and welcoming space for all.

CapeTalk reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

CapeTalk is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

Read More
Massive storm set for Cape Town, bringing the rains

Massive storm set for Cape Town, bringing the rains

Check out Spike's Surf Report weather forecast for next week's big storm, hopefully bringing much-needed rain to Cape Town.

12 mantras that Shaun Tomson (one of the greatest surfers ever) lives by

12 mantras that Shaun Tomson (one of the greatest surfers ever) lives by

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviews Tomson about his inspirational new book “The Code: The Power of ‘I Will’”.

'I'd focus on one stroke at a time', recounts SUP record holder Chris Bertish

'I'd focus on one stroke at a time', recounts SUP record holder Chris Bertish

Cape adventurer Chris Bertish tells all after completing his first ever solo unsupported transatlantic SUP crossing over 93 days.

Surf’s up with Liquid Freedom Surf

Surf’s up with Liquid Freedom Surf

Liquid Freedom Surf is dedicated to producing the highest quality locally manufactured surf boards and stand-up paddle boards.

SA surf heroes honoured with Cape monument at Muizenberg  beach

SA surf heroes honoured with Cape monument at Muizenberg beach

The 'walk of fame' site will be SA’s first national monument dedicated to preserving and promoting the heritage of surfing.

Waves for Change scoops honour at the Laureus World Sports Awards

Waves for Change scoops honour at the Laureus World Sports Awards

Founder of organisation that brings surfing to underprivileged kids describes the excitement of winning this prestigious award.

Surfer tells of his encounter with great white shark

Surfer tells of his encounter with great white shark

Ben Swart says he was lucky to get out of the water unharmed after having an encounter with a shark on Monday.

Surfer describes frightening encounter with great white shark

Surfer describes frightening encounter with great white shark

The man was struck off his surf ski by a great white shark while paddling off the coast of Plettenberg Bay.

WATCH: Super pod of humpback whales making waves online

WATCH: Super pod of humpback whales making waves online

A rare spotting of over 60 humpback whales in the Atlantic this weekend captured in this amazing drone footage from above.

SWOT Club surfing for transformation

SWOT Club surfing for transformation

After 8 months teaching Muizenberg youth surfing, the SWOT surf team is already looking to compete at international events.

Popular articles
Hermanus resident says that violent housing protests could've been avoided

Hermanus resident says that violent housing protests could've been avoided

It’s easy to blame a small bunch of thugs but I really don’t think that’s the case – Vanessa, Hermanus resident

Naked Scientist: How much water is too much for your body a day?

Naked Scientist: How much water is too much for your body a day?

Chris Smith explains why you need to replace what you are losing and how too much water can pose some health risks.

[LISTEN] Zille responds to Lindiwe Mazibuko comments that she undermined her

[LISTEN] Zille responds to Lindiwe Mazibuko comments that she undermined her

Helen Zille responds to alleged comments made by Lindiwe Mazibuko at a dinner, saying she's doing the same to Musi Maimane.

[WATCH] Melania Trump's reaction after shaking Putin's hand

[WATCH] Melania Trump's reaction after shaking Putin's hand

Waitress praised for standing up for herself after a man touched her butt on his way to the toilet and a dog comforts its owner.

Parents no longer have to travel with children's birth certificates

Parents no longer have to travel with children's birth certificates

The new Home Affairs upgrades to the system include printing parents details at the back of the child's passport.

Tell me what you want: Study reveals most common sexual fantasies

Tell me what you want: Study reveals most common sexual fantasies

What are your sexual fantasies? Disclosure can bring sexual freedom, but it can also have downsides. A study lists the top trends.