Meet the My Steaz Winner!
Last week we were so so excited to announce the winner of the My Steaz contest. Chris Hannant's beautiful video attracted the most votes and won himself and Reef Check $5000 each! Curious about what he plans to do with his winnings? Read on...
Why did you create a video for the My Steaz contest?
I have such a passion for travel that goes so far beyond just seeing cool new stuff and taking pretty pictures. I think it's incredibly important to see what else is out there, meet new people, experience different cultures, and have crazy adventures. There is really nothing else I can think of that is more rewarding to do for yourself. So often I see someone putting a bunch of money toward something silly that they don't need and I think (or say) "That could be a plane ticket." I think the American culture suffers greatly from our overall lack of worldliness. We have so many false notions about foreign place and culture and have become sheltered in our own country's comfort zone! I really wanted to share my video, my passion for traveling, and inspire others to do the same.
What do the Steaz values mean to you?
I didn't know about Steaz Tea before the contest, but "steaz" has been in my vocabulary for a while now, so when my friends first heard about the tea/contest they thought it was hilarious and found it totally appropriate for me to enter. To me, the Steaz values are about being true to who you are and following your own path to pursue whatever makes you happy.
Why did you pick Reef Check as your charity?
The ocean has always been a huge part of my life through surfing, diving, spearfishing, skimboarding, even just sitting on the shore or falling asleep to its sounds in a friend's beach cottage. In my traveling I've seen first hand so many beaches, reefs, and surf lineups that have suffered from serious neglect of the ocean and its importance to us and our planet. It's a real shame. I recently helped create and work for a non-profit called The Waters Edge Project to help teach small coastal communities the importance of taking care of their beaches and the ocean, and so Reef Check was definitely the charity that I wanted to help out.
Any idea what you will do with the prize money?
Travel! People always say "You're so lucky you get to travel so much!" and I always tell them that there is absolutely no luck involved. Every year I work very hard so I make it happen, even if it's for one week or, like the trip documented in my Steaz film, five months. I've been wanting to go to South America since I was in high school, and with these winnings that's exactly what I'm going to do! Panama to Peru...and maybe beyond!
Congrats again Chris! You earned it and we can't wait to follow your trip :)
Watch Chris' winning video below, and if you enjoyed his work check out more at www.chrishannant.com!