We are building a skate park in San Luis so that children suffering from poverty can learn how to skateboard, can stay away from crime and learn good values and skills to succeed in life! We see it as a form of alternative and fun leisure activities, which would support them in discovering a brighter and more structured side of life and consequently open doors to a better future. Besides learning a new sport and having fun, children learn such values as team spirit and self-confidence.
San Luis is a former working class neighborhood in the Dominican Republic with many poverty refugees from Haiti. People here live in wooden or tin huts - often without electricity and water. Many desperate parents send their children to earn money on the streets. Common children's work include shoe shining, street vending, car window cleaning or garbage collecting. In doing so, children are often exposed to great dangers. In extreme cases, children are even forced to theft or prostitution.
Hopelessness and lack of child care and leisure activities mislead children to a life on the street and increase the risk of ending up in felonious surroundings. We believe that by building a skateboard park and offering free skateboard classes, we create an alternative and fun leisure activities, which would support them in discovering a brighter and more structured side of life and consequently open doors to a better future.
Besides learning a new sport and having fun, children learn such values as team spirit and self-confidence. In the course of our trainings, young people may become "Junior Coaches" and learn to take responsibility teaching other children. For many kids who already participate in our courses, it is more than just about skating - it becomes their lifestyle and changes their otherwise dreary everyday life.