Partnering with local educational institutions, Coast 2 Coast enables rural youth from small-scale fishing communities to be resilient researchers and science communicators, exploring their ancient seas and ancestral villages using new "edutainment" mediums and accessible transmedia tools to co-create stories rooted in traditional knowledge, fortified by science, and expressed through their imaginations for their ocean and communities' sustainable futures.
In 2014, Nicolás Landa Tami, a cinematographer from Lima, Peru, and Emi Koch, a social-ecologist and free surfer from San Diego, California met in Lobitos, Peru. The two decided to partner up and established Coast 2 Coast.
Emi started the nonprofit, Beyond the Surface International, as a network of surfing for youth empowerment programs, offering virtual and on-the-ground support to organizations around the world. Through the Lobitos Cinema Project and his various projects, Nico facilitated audiovisual workshops for indigenous communities to share their stories through their own documentaries and photo series.
Inspired by each other's passions, Nico and Emi began traveling the coastlines together, facilitating surfing and storytelling workshops in small-scale fishing villages around the world. Upon witnessing the ocean's collapse and climate change's impacts on the communities and listening to their experiences, Emi and Nico created Coast 2 Coast as a platform for vulnerable, small-scale fishing communities to celebrate their existence and share with the outside world about the unprecedented social and ecological challenges they are facing on a daily basis.
EMI KOCH is a marine social-ecologist, Fulbright Fellow, and National Geographic Explorer from San Diego, California. When Emi was nineteen, she used her sponsorship as a professional surfer with Billabong to start her own nonprofit engaging youth in marginalized coastal villages through surfing. Beyond the Surface serves as the legal structure for Coast 2 Coast. Emi recently graduated with a Masters in Marine Biodiversity & Conservation from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. She did her undergraduate work at Georgetown University in Psychology with focuses in Anthropology and Justice & Peace Studies.
NICOLÁS LANDA TAMI is a cinematographer, video journalist and audiovisual arts educator from Lima, Peru. Nico began his career producing television news stories with young reporters specializing in environmental news. He then worked as an audiovisual facilitator with indigenous groups across Peru, co-creating short films on education, health, human rights, and mining conflicts. As a cinematographer, Nico works on a diverse range of productions including documentary feature films, transmedia web, photography and publicity. One of his films, The Last Shaman, was recently brought to Netflix and executively produced by Leonardo Di Caprio.