With a growing rate of 166% per year, significantly more than any other sport or leisure activity, the fastest growing activity in America is not football, basketball or baseball, but skateboarding.
Skateboarding has grown from a sub-culture to one of the biggest activities in multiple regions of the world. Still, skate parks are hugely under-represented in extensive areas of the world.
As skateboarding enters the Olympics it has grown from a sub-culture to one of the biggest activities in the developed world. Still, skate parks are hugely under-represented in the developing world.
Our mission is to help fill that gap - to reach an audience that wouldn’t normally be presented with the opportunities we provide. We are out to prove as follows: Skateboarding is one of the most empowering activities in the world, and it will continue to be so. Skateboarding has substantial meaning and there are, in fact, a range of steps we can take to ensure the most possible children end up on a skateboard.
Every child may not have access to skateboarding yet, but it’s central to affirm that the concept of a more meaningful life through skateboarding is eminently plausible and that it comprises elements that can be clearly named and fought for.
Access to healthy activities and play is not a luxury, it's a necessity.
WAW is an international and independent non-profit organization built to help make skateboarding accessible worldwide, by developing skateparks in areas of the world where they are not present and support the communities pivoting around the facilities. We've had the fortune of delivering 14 international projects throughout the developing world, in collaboration with local communities. Our team extends to international volunteers from diverse professional backgrounds.
By developing these public and free spaces, we wish to empower and provide our local partners with the continuous support needed for them to form their own organizations, and independently and successfully manage the facilities, offering the best outcome and defining the statement ‘It’s their park’.
A free skateboard loaner program is installed at every skatepark and skate programs are being held, ensuring everyone with free, safe, and equal access to use of their skatepark.
Through our professional experiences coupled with our personal skateboarding backgrounds, we wanted to deliver these positive outcomes to an audience that wouldn’t normally have the opportunity. We look forward to continuing to share these wonders around the world.
Beyond developing skateparks in the developing world, our mission is to furthermore provide our local partners with the skills, knowledge and experience to not only run programs and one day build their own facilities, but inspire them and provide the support needed for them to start their own organizations. Our goal is not to become some kind of worldwide franchise but quite the contrary: we want to do what we can to set people free, to pursue their own dreams. Ideally we will provide them with the motivation and support, to move us more and more out of the picture and build up a self substained culture pivoting around skateboarding and the benefits it brings to the marginalized youth around the world.
"Wonders Around the World embody a rare and powerful coalition of hard work and fun. Not even the early completion of the project was enough to quell their dedication to the project, as they began imagining new obstacles and creating beautiful concrete murals and sculptures. It’s a testament to the love these guys have for skateboarding, investing more and more of themselves in the communities they work with and bring skateboarding to them in an approachable and fun way. Wonders gave the school, girls and community around Small Steps for Compassion the best skatepark they could possibly give. It matches and often supersedes the kind of facility you’d expect to find in the west. It’s being adopted with open arms, wild bravery and a grateful community of new and old skaters in Tanzania and overseas. Thanks you so much."
Corrinne Pickle, Director.
Small Steps for Compassion
"The skatepark was a dream for us. Before we were playing on the streets, which could be dangerous for us. We are very happy because we have the skatepark in our city and as girls we are trying to get other girls to start skating. Suli skatepark helped us and other girls develop confidence in ourselves. At first, it was only a small number of girls skating, but now a larger number of girls have started skating."
Amna, Fatma and Riam. Skateboarders.
Suli Skate Girls
"Before I knew about the skatepark I didn't have many friends. Now I have many at the skatepark and I am very happy about it. We skate every day and help each other to get better "
Binsa, 12 year old skateboarder.
The return on investment in a skatepark is incredible. Outcomes of the inherent social and health benefits of active play, from a facility that costs almost nothing to run and maintain. This is a stark contrast to the majority of sports facilities presented to the youth around the world, all of which have higher staffing and physical maintenance needs than a durable concrete skatepark. Most importantly they are free for all members of the community to use. Our experience shows that skateparks offer a long term installation for a minimal investment.
Skate parks act as an important social space for young people: "Research supports the notion that skate parks not only provide a venue for leisure and physical activity but can act as an important social space for young people. Young people who hang out there practice a range of pro-social behaviors and life skills critical for social development and resilience."
He’s as down to earth as they get. As a product of Byrggeriet Skateboard High School in Malmö, Sweden, Oski has become more than just a graduate, he’s emblematic of a new breed of skateboarding. He is skateboarding 2.0 if full effecy, showing the impact of skateboarders today growing up and raised with access to a wide variety of skateparks. It’s his ability to make a single clip more memorable than an entire video that’s so magnetic about his light-footed spontaneity. Even in his dominant contest runs, there’s a sense that he’s orchestrating individual notes that feel right, with his light-footed spontaneity, not striving for winning, which nevertheless also happens at an impressive clip and frequency.