Australian professional skateboarder Oliver “Ollie” Percovich visited Afghanistan in 2007 for the first time basically out of a mixture of restlessness, curiosity and a desire to see the world. What he did not suspect is that this visit was going to be a seed of inspiration for a project that has been underway for seven years now and that is causing a lot to talk about. This is Skateistan.
Skateistan is an NGO focused on children that works to create spaces for the most disadvantaged children to enjoy skateboarding and skating and also to get to know each other and Build relationships and friendships. The ultimate goal of this non-profit organization is the education of children with few or no resources, since Skateistan has an educational program where children can integrate and learn various subjects at an academic level.
So far Skateistan has been active in Afghanistan, Cambodia and South Africa. They plan to develop their next project in the German capital: Berlin.
Students have the opportunity, once they have spent a few years in the organization and after regularly attending meetings and training sessions, to become Skateistan teachers or instructors. This is the case of Hanifa, an Afghan girl who at the age of 5 learned to skate in Skateistan and, although at the age of 10 she had no choice but to start working on the streets with her sister to earn a living, she never missed training or training. classes and now she has become an instructor for new children entering the NGO.
Skateistan recently signed a collaboration with Polaroid, specifically with the initiative Polaroid Impossible Project, giving rise to the Skate x Impossible movement in which both organizations promote snapshots of children participating in Skateistan, images of them practicing and enjoying skating.