Prizewinner Alexandra Rinder, Carmen Lucia Rodríguez del Toro (Adeje Equality Councillor), Patricia Hernández (Canarian Government Vice President), and Adeje mayor José Miguel Rodríguez Fraga. Photo: Adeje Ayuntamiento.
The Abinque prize has been awarded since 2004 by the Asociación San Juan to recognize women who stand out for their contribution to equality and to the life of Adeje municipality. In the last couple of years it has been awarded to Brigitte Gypen, the Walk for Life founder, and to the municipality’s older women. This year, it has gone to Alexandra Rinder, to whom Canarian government vice-president Patricia Hernández and Adeje mayor José Miguel Rodríguez Fraga presentented the award at a ceremony in the CDTCA on Friday night. The presentation was followed by the annual women’s dinner, organized by the equality department and attended by more than 200 guests.
Prizewinner Alexandra Rinder has twice been body boarding world champion and is the youngest person to win the Abinque in the history of the award. At just 16 years old, she was also the youngest person to ever win the world bodyboarding title, as well as being the second Canarian to have taken the women’s title. In a sport generally considered the preserve of men, she has broken many barriers here and abroad and has also become an unofficial ambassador for Costa Adeje internationally particularly in the world of water sports.
Accepting the award, Rinder said she was really proud to receive it, and thanked Adeje Ayuntamiento for having stood by her from the start of her career, believing in her from the time she rode her first waves in La Caleta. She stressed that her sport had been considered a minority sport, but is now growing in statue thanks to the support of the borough. She also thanked her sponsors, her family and those who always believed in her, who give her the help she needed to realise her dreams. “There was always a lot of work, or tears and stress,” she said, “but a lot of happiness too on a journey which has allowed me get to know different cultures, countries and people from all over the world, although nothing compares with coming home, coming back to Adeje, because I know my people are here”.
Canarian Government Vice President Patricia Hernández underlined the importance of the increased presence of women in sport. She said “Tonight we are celebrating two things: those who have trodden this path before us, the women who opened the way for us, and let’s not forget that there is still some way to go before women and men are on an equal footing; and we also celebrate the women who have paved the way in sport, who have been to the fore”. The vice-president said that she was “delighted to be able to present this prize to the youngest ever to win the world title in the sport, and who has become a role model for young people. I feel so lucky to know young people like Alexandra who take on challenges, ride enormous waves in the same way that many overcome the enormous waves of sexism that still exist in the world of sport and in the world of surfing and bodyboarding.”
Adeje mayor Fraga said that “equality between the sexes is something that matters to all of us, and is vitally important for the health of our communal co-existence. We are also aware that there is still a long way to go. There are many kinds of inequalities that need to be addressed, in a world where too often inequalities block personal development”. He said that Alexandra Rinder was an example of what can be achieved with strength of purpose, and that dreams could become true. “The most important thing we have in this borough”, he continued, “isn’t that we have the best hotels or the best tourist destination, but our people, people such as Alexandra, who are changing the world. She is an example of then new Adeje person, who has actively contributed to our community today, with so many different nationalities, cultures and ways of life existing in harmony”.