Skateboarding was always a sport I wanted to pick up as a teenager but for some reason never did. Its popularity has only skyrocketed since my youth and programs like Skateistan has contributed greatly to the sport’s growth internationally.
A non-governmental organization (NGO) started by Oliver Percovich an Australian skateboarder in 2007, Skateistan began as a project to create a small skate school in Afghanistan. With the success of his initial classes, Oliver’s vision grew and by the fall of 2009, the organization completed construction of an all-inclusive skatepark and educational facility on land donated by the Afghan National Olympic Committee.
Dedicated to teaching both male and female youth ranging in age between 5-18, Skateistan’s development aid programs offer youth new opportunities in personal empowerment, education and cross-cultural interaction through skateboarding. Participants are 40% female and include streetworking children and youth with disabilities who, in addition to improving on their skateboarding skills, explore topics such as environmental health and peace while developing skills in leadership, civic responsibility and the creative arts in Skateistan classrooms.
Through skateboarding and increased opportunities for youth development, the organization is hoping to direct its students to become leaders in their communities who can further act as agents of social change.
Today, Skateistan is spreading their blend of skateboarding and youth development with schools in Kabul, Mazar-e-Sharif, Pakistan and Cambodia.
Interested in getting involved? There are many ways to support Skateistan’s schools, from making a donation or sending equipment, to becoming a volunteer, click here for more information.
Thank you Skateistan for making the world wonderful.
LET ME KNOW, REPLY BELOW: What’s one sport you want to pick up but haven’t yet had the chance?