On March 8th Skateistan will join the global community in celebrating International Women's Day (IWD), with events at Skateistan’s project sites in Afghanistan and Cambodia. Worldwide, Women’s Day is a celebration of respect, appreciation and love for women and their achievements.
Last month Skateistan Cambodia was lucky enough to host a very special visitor: Pro skater Javier Mendizabal from the Quiksilver Foundation!
Javier came to Skateistan Cambodia as a Quiksilver Ambassador, marking the beginning of an exciting new collaboration between the Quiksilver Foundation, Vuerich B, and Skateistan. The Quiksilver Foundation and Vuerich B have recently released a range of sunglasses made out of recycled skateboard decks - some of which were actually used here at Skateistan Cambodia. A portion of the proceeds from each pair sold will go towards Skateistan and its projects.
We have recently begun a video exchange class connecting Skateistan students across two countries; Cambodia and Afghanistan. The girls attending our Kabul project on Tuesday afternoons are connecting with girls of Skateistan Cambodia on a weekly basis via Skype video sessions.
Both countries involved in the project are gifted with a rich cultural heritage, which has been threatened by decades of war. Since the purpose of the exchange is to share and celebrate the different aspects of both cultures, the students are not just learning about another culture but also their own as well by delving deeper into what it means to be Afghan or Cambodian.
The exchange began with the students discussing answers to questions such as: interests, hobbies, daily lives and skateboarding skills. Afterwards, students from each Skateistan project were able exchange personal experiences within their country.
The students discussed custom, culture, population, climate, geography and products of each other’s countries. As the class went on they started to discuss more of the social issues that are present in their countries, such as percentage of working women and female inequality.
The girls in Cambodia and Afghanistan have found the exchange uplifting and exciting, giving the students a sense of pride in their cultural identity;
“We are happy to share about what exists in Cambodian culture including food, clothes, dancing, greeting, resorts, as well as the other things since the girls there could not see these things directly, but through pictures, they could understand and know what we have here.” – Skateistan Cambodia’s female students
For over a year, Skateistan Cambodia has held mobile sessions in Phnom Penh, travelling around the city to skate with our partner NGOs or in public areas. We have been working towards opening a space of our own where we can include more children and provide a higher quality of programming for some time now. We have finally done it, and our new facility is officially open!
Donate to your favorite ramp and give the gift of skating to girls and boys in Phnom Penh!
Skateistan Cambodia is building a new skatepark in Phnom Penh to be able to reach more kids and expand its programming. We now have a location for our very own skatepark and a roof is being built, but we need your support to fund the construction of the skateboard ramps.
Simply pick your favorite ramp and make a small donation of €1 or more here! We have four different ramps that we need donations to finish: kicker ramps, a quarterpipe, a pyramid fun box and a bank.
So far the Skateistan Cambodia project has been teaching in the streets of Phnom Penh and at other NGO locations. Now we want to provide a safe, covered skatepark facility that Cambodian youth of all backgrounds can use, rain or shine. The facility will not only allow youth of all backgrounds to come together, but classroom spaces will let us provide education, training workshops and more to our students!