Skateboarding is unique in that it truly rallies people from all walks of life, from hemisphere to hemisphere and skate park to skate park, we are an eclectic group of people.
Despite all of the things that make us different, we are unified by our love for the shred and the lifestyle that accompanies it. As we expand our knowledge of the boarding community and broaden our edges, you'll find more and more skaters giving back to those communities and reaching out to others. We're here to give you a solid line up of skate foundations, and charities that you can help give back to if you're so inclined. We'll give you the deets on what they're all about and let you know how you can help out while bringing your own flavor of skateboarding to the table.
1. Stoked Mentoring
"In action sports culture, to be “stoked” means to be motivated, inspired and energized. Using this concept as the foundation of our philosophy, STOKED employs the sports, cultures, and industries of action sports to propel youth from underserved communities to successful futures."
Stoked Mentoring provides middle and high school programs, options for business partnership and partnerships within schools, with outreach in New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles. You can pitch in by contributing whatever it is you want to share about yourself, whether that's teaching kick-flicks and avoiding nasty falls or tutoring in math after school, Stoked will have a place for you.
2. Skate For Change
This powerful foundation is tackling homelessness and making it easy for anyone to help out within their own communities. Their efforts include giving out necessities such as water, hygiene products, socks and other clothing items to their homeless areas.
They maintain a core ethic that everyone has value, it may take a little more effort to find and nurture it, but everyone has value and worth that should be recognized. You can donate through their website, volunteer to start a chapter in your area, or simply skate on down to your homeless community today and start giving out helpful items, making connections, and growing your community.
One of the first international skateboarding education initiatives was created in 2007 by Australian skateboarder Oliver Percovich.
"IT HAD TO BE DRIVEN BY WHAT NEEDS WERE PERCEIVED BY AFGHANS. THAT'S WHERE MY IDEA, THE IDEA OF SKATEISTAN CAME FROM – IT NEEDED TO ACTUALLY BE DRIVEN BY THE KIDS SINCE IT STARTED WITH KIDS SAYING 'WE NEED MORE SKATEBOARDS!'"
What started off as a seemingly easy shipment and supply of a few skateboard erupted into a world-wide phenomenon that stretched to places like Cambodia, and South Africa. It has led to the building of educational facilities, skate ramps and parks, and is beginning to be visited by some of the worlds' most famous skaters and gain even more traction.
"SKATEISTAN HAS PROVEN EXTREMELY SUCCESSFUL AT GIVING KIDS, ESPECIALLY GIRLS, A SENSE OF COMMUNITY AND AN OPPORTUNITY TO PLAY AND LEARN."
- Tony Hawk, Global Advisory Board member
You can get involved by visiting their website where you can donate once or set it up to donate regularly. It gives you a clear display of where your donation goes and keeps you in the loop on what their organization is up to. Not to mention, they have some pretty sweet merch.
4. Exposure Skate Org
In reaction to women's events being taken out of the majority of the skateboarding competitions in 2012, professional skater, Amelia Brodka decided she had to take the helm for women in the sport and change the course that they were headed on.
With the help of Lesli Cohen, she engineered Exposure 2013, as the premier destination for female skateboarders. From there, the organization has dipped it's toes in a myriad of social issues and tackled them head on, such as raising money for domestic abuse survivors and raising awareness on the issue. Amelia, Lesli, and their teams empower young women through education; bringing exciting skate demos to schools, hosting events, and more.
You can donate through their website, sign up to volunteer in your area, or shop their thrifty skate gear to help support this awesome organization.