South Africa

South Africa is one of the world’s most diverse countries, but it also remains one of the most unequal societies despite significant progress since the end of apartheid. Inequalities strongly correlate with race, and in central Johannesburg, extreme economic inequality within the city exposes young people from low-income backgrounds to social risks such as a lack of a quality education, violence and social isolation. Limited access to recreational facilities and quality education can also undermine children’s ability and desire to learn.

We have been active in the disadvantaged inner city of Johannesburg since early 2014, when we started running Outreach sessions in a previously abandoned skate bowl at a park in the neighborhood of Troyeville. In August 2016, we officially opened our fourth Skate School, located in downtown Johannesburg. The Skate School includes a state-of-the-art concrete skatepark and three-story education centre, with flexible office and classroom space.

Programs run five days a week in the afternoon for children to attend after they have been to public school. Girls-only sessions address the gender divide and give girls an equal opportunity to join in. We also run Outreach sessions in the Bjala Square park close to the Skate School. 

The Skate School is located at 32 Van Beek Street, New Doornfontein and you can reach them on +27 11 027 5821. 

Lining up to skate
Regular students
Female
Low-income backgrounds
Students living with disabilities
Updates from South Africa
Skateistan Alumni: Ntlanzeko's story
We are very excited to publish the first in a group of stories from Skateistan's Alumni Network. The Alumni Network is a new project, which connects our former students with each other, shares opportunities and celebrates their success.
Celebrating Heritage Day in South Africa
Heritage is something to be proud of. At our Skate School in Johannesburg, children celebrate their own heritage and learn about the cultures and traditions of other groups.
Celebrating International Day of Peace 2020
What does peace mean to you? That’s a question our students have been exploring to mark this year’s International Day of Peace.
What Skateistan learned about: running remote programs during a global pandemic
In our series ‘What Skateistan learned about’, we share stories, successes and challenges from the perspective of a non-profit organization operating in Afghanistan, South Africa and Cambodia.
Coping with Covid: A view from Johannesburg
Covid-19 has affected people differently all over the world. In this post, we talk to Enos, a Skateistan Educator in South Africa, to get the word on how things have played out in Johannesburg.
Girls unite! Announcing our new partnership with Global Girl Project
We're very excited to announce that we'll soon be working with Global Girl Project; a special partnership that will empower older girls at our Skate Schools in Afghanistan and South Africa.
Measuring impact at Skateistan: Social Return on Investment
Recently, we embarked on a project to measure the social return on funds invested in Skateistan. Thanks to the efforts of three amazing volunteers, we can now calculate the social value of our programs! How do we do that? Read on!
It's Natalie's Turn
Meet Natalie, who is 16 and is in her last year of high school in South Africa. Natalie has bright hopes for her future and it is her role model, Wendy, who has helped her to chase these dreams.
Skateistan’s Culture of Safety
At Skateistan we aim to put the safety of our staff and students first in everything we do. With the coronavirus situation changing rapidly around us, we thought it was the right time to share our approach to safety.
16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence
Skateistan works to empower women and girls through skateboarding and education. Near the end of 2019, Skateistan Skate Schools participated in the '16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence' to continue advocating on behalf of women and girls.