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Monday, June 20, 2011

Is this the signal that the war has an end?

Many look for reasons why we fight in a far away land like Afghanistan.

To fight terror?
To fight fundamentalism?
Is it to fight for the right for the children and the families to have the same rights as we do in the west?
For me it is and was all the above.....

With Skateistan maybe the war is coming to an end.....

From their media kit:

Afghanistan‘s first skateboarding school
"The idea of Skateistan began in 2007 when two Australians arrived in Kabul, Afghanistan, with three skateboards and quickly met a group of local boys and girls eager to learn how to skate.  What began as informal skateboarding lessons at a local empty fountain turned into something much bigger.  Skateistan took shape in the following years, with the help of international donors and skate industry partners.  On October 29, 2009, the 1750 m2 Skateistan park officially opened, giving nearly 300 boys and girls in Kabul, ages 5 to 17, a secure environment and an indoor skatepark to come to every week.

Skateistan is Afghanistan’s first skateboarding school, with separate teaching days for male and female students, as well as classes for the disabled.  It’s also one of very few recreational spaces for girls and young women in Kabul.  The organization provides on-site loans of skateboarding equipment, shoes and safety gear.  Skate instruction is given by experienced international skateboarders as well as some of the very first kids to step on a skateboard in Afghanistan, who now work with Skateistan as skate instructors.

Skateboarding has been key in bringing together Afghan youth of all ethnicities and socioeconomic backgrounds, and the interac-tion is further built upon through classroom projects and discussion.  The students themselves decide what they want to learn, while Skateistan provides them with the resources they need to develop skills and tell their own stories.

Youth (under 26) account for 70 percent of the country’s population, and so the most worthwhile investment that can be made is to provide a space that encourages tolerance, a civil society built on trust, and opportunities for education.  Furthermore, the absolute novelty of the sport means that there aren’t the social norms attached that prevent girls from taking part in other sports.  To give girls in Kabul a venue to exercise, have fun and play together is one of the most important reasons Skateistan was created."

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