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. 

Lining up to skate
Regular students
Female
Low-income backgrounds
Students living with disabilities
Updates from South Africa
What Skateistan learned about...community engagement
Read the latest in our mini series about challenges we've faced and what we've learned from them. This time, we take a look at the power of community engagement.
Curriculum update: Natural Balance
Between April and July this year, our Skate and Create students were following the Natural Balance curriculum. Find out what they've been learning about!
10 Ways That Skateistan Celebrates Go Skateboarding Day
Skateistan celebrated Go Skateboarding Day all over the world. Students participated in a rad day of skating and fun with their communities.
Student Profile: Thabile's Story
Meet Thabile: A 9 year old girl who attends Skateistan in Johannesburg.
Changing the Story: This is Nthabiseng
Meet Nthabiseng, a Skate and Create student in Johannesburg, South Africa.