We spoke to Occ after two appearances and he told us why he picked SurfAid as his charity:
“On my first trip to the Mentawai I fell in love with the place but being on a luxury boat I didn’t see what was happening on the islands,” Occ said. “When I found out about their tough health and living conditions it saddened me to the bone, and ever since then I started working with SurfAid as an ambassador to bring attention to their work.
We were stoked that Mark “Occy” Occhilupo chose SurfAid as his charity to support on Australia’s Dancing with the Stars.
Occ has been a long-time supporter of SurfAid and being the first world champion surfer on the show, he stirred up a lot of interest.
From deep in our hearts and from the Mentawai people, thanks for all the great support Occ and Jade. You had a huge dig for us and thanks to everyone who voted. The money raised will go to our Mentawai Recovery Program. Terima kasih banyak.
“So many surfers have the time of their lives up there - some without realising what’s going on behind the palms. And in recent times the locals have had heavy blows from earthquakes and tsunami, and SurfAid is at the forefront of helping them - so that’s why I picked them.”
Thanks Occ - you’re a champ and good luck on the floor.
SMS ‘Occy’ to 191 777 or call 1902 557 720.
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Final voting closes: 10/07/2011 at 18:30 AEST
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