Skateboarding Charity Offers Freedom For Kids in Refugee Camps | “You’re literally never alone if you’ve got a skateboard.”
Doesn’t it just melt the heart the various way that skateboarding can help to save peoples souls and lives! It keeps kids off drugs, off videogames, off couches, etc.
It helps kids in refugee camps gain empowerment and freedom thanks to Free Movement Skateboarding (you can donate there now for a great cause.) There’s a cool write-up about it on i-D about what they are doing at the camps.
“Skateboards, which they distribute to kids, teenagers, and young adults at six sessions a week, are mostly donated by skaters across the UK. The boards have seen a lot of dedicated use, and they’re worn and scratched, which doesn’t stop kids from practicing their first ollies (even in inappropriate footwear in sandals). Most of them came to Athens with their families to escape war and destruction in Syria, Afghanistan, and Iran. They don’t know much about skateboarding. They don’t care about Supreme drops and they’ve never seen Kids or Spike Jonze’s Video Days.What they know is that skateboarding is fun, and it connects people regardless of background, so they keep coming back for more.
“Since 2015, more than a million refugees have entered Europe, the majority of them through Greece and Italy. The number of documented refugees waiting for their asylum approval in Greece is just over 60,000. There are several refugee camps in Athens, alongside squats in various repurposed buildings, including hotels. Free Movement Skateboarding is funded by Help Refugees charity, and they run skate sessions not only in the camps but also in collaboration with refugee community center Khora and youth service Velos. Apart from Will and Ruby, the team includes Oisin Fogarty Graveson, a devoted skater who is responsible for communications. Free Movement Skateboarding also currently employs a local Athenian skateboarder to help them teach, and they are hoping to enlist more in the future. Together with occasional help from skaters from places as diverse as Morocco and Poland, they’ve created a hopeful union sharing the belief that a deck and four wheels can truly change someone’s life”
“In the end, the impact of what they do goes beyond the city and beyond any borders. “You’re literally never alone if you’ve got a skateboard. You can go anywhere in the world and you find skateboarders, and as soon as you walk up to them you’re their friend instantly. That’s another reason why it’s so good to give that skill and that culture to refugees, because they can go anywhere and they’ll find friends in other skateboarders,” Oisin says.”
Skating against hate. We love to see what a little helping hand can do for confidence, both on and off the board, and we're continually amazed to see so many kids progressing in our partners Free Movement Skateboarding's latest sessions. Free Movement is about more than just skating, it's about how to teach gender equality, solidarity, comradeship, feminism, it's about how to break down barriers… and all of that while jumping and cruising on a skateboard. Please help us support incredible projects like this that continue to work with refugee children in Greece by donating through the link in our bio. #Repost from @helprefugeesuk