Go Skateboarding Day or some people refer to it as (GSD) is actually an official annual holiday. Conceived by the International Association of Skateboard Companies (IASC) to promote skateboarding.
This all happened a year after New Yorkers Kerel “Srikala” Roach and Bryan Chin organized the first All City Skate Jam. Now some people might find this similar with “Mother’s Day” in the sense that it was conceived by Hallmark to push sales. Although Hallmark maintains that it “can’t take credit for creating holidays.” And some people actually supports that claim. But that’s not what this is all about.
Regardless of why “Go Skateboarding Day” exist as a holiday today, anyone whose life has been touched by a plank of wood on four rubbery wheels should embrace it and celebrate it with pride. And if you don’t already know why, then allow me to enlighten you.
Skateboarding allowed us to discover our resilience, it made us reach deep into our personality to find our creativity. It gave us some understanding of equality where age did not matter and gender barriers dissolve. Skateboarding doesn’t even care where you’re from. The only important thing is how it makes us feel. Pushing you to land that next trick. The excitement and the fear and sometimes the pain drives us all together in one direction, progression.
These feelings cannot be contained, so we share them. We pass them around to be nurtured so our numbers keeps growing and I guess that’s maybe part of why the holiday now exist. It’s here because of us, because of you!
This year abooard would like to celebrate “Go skateboarding day” by highlighting some organisations working on more than steezy moves. They spread the stoke, they promote positivity, inclusiveness and give hope to those who need it the most.
A future on wheels
A future on wheels was created in support of Organisation for Basic Training (Cambodia), dedicated to the education and empowerment of the children living in Chiro Village.
Antonio who created “A future on wheels” spent a year crowdfunding and crowdsourcing used longboards, hardware and safety gear then flew to Cambodia together with some of his friends to share the stoke, sprinkle some good vibes and give the children of Chiro longboarding lessons.
Longboard girls crew
LGC has created an NGO called Longboard Women United a platform of social and humanitarian contribution, creating social projects, helping and partnering-up with different associations and NGOs around the world empowering humans in need, mostly but not exclusively through skate and longboarding.
Help humans in need using skate and longboarding as a tool for change.
Be part of the change
Bring joy, empowerment & financial aid to communities worldwide.
Oasis skateboard factory
This Toronto District School Board alternative school design program is the first school site in the TDSB and the world fully dedicated to offering all subjects with a skateboard design and street art focus. It helps students earn high school credits by running a skate/longboard design business. It teaches them how to create their own brand and the ins and outs of running a skateboard business or a professional design studio.
Oasis Skateboard Factory helps students earn Gr. 9-12 compulsory & elective high-school credits by running an entrepreneurial business where they learn hands-on to build skateboards, design original custom graphics, work with local artists and community collaborators, market and display their work and have the opportunity to receive an honorarium.
But wait there’s more
Stoked Mentoring // stoked.org – creates a community of fearless leaders through mentoring, opportunity, and action. Through mentorship and action sports culture, STOKED empowers underserved youth to reach their fullest potential, instilling passion, resilience and determination.
Skateistan // skateistan.org – an award-winning international non-profit organization providing programs combining skateboarding and education to children and youth in Afghanistan, Cambodia and South Africa. Through the hook of skateboarding, we engage with children, especially girls and youth from low-income backgrounds, giving them access to safe spaces and education and provide valuable life skills that go beyond the skatepark and the classroom.
Skate for change // skateforchange.org – has chapters across the globe that takes a look at what their community needs, and then take action. Whether it is handing out socks, or cleaning up parks, Skate for Change is all about your town, and your city. Creatives, misfits, skaters, artists, photographers, musicians; Everyone is welcome.
Action Sports for Development and Peace (ASDP) // actionsportsfordev.org – action sports participants have established non-profit organizations and initiatives relating to an array of social issues, including health, education, environment, community rebuilding and recovery following war, conflict and disasters, girls and women’s empowerment, youth development and anti-violence, to name just a few!
Longboarding for Peace – is a movement forward, powered by skateboarders and those who wish to support efforts to foster peace, balance and justice.
Landyachtz – One Board, One Tree – they promise to plant one tree for every longboard they sell. That’s a lot of trees man!
I could go on but I want to celebrate go skateboarding day too.
The number of organisations doing awesome work using longboarding or skateboarding as a medium to reach out and have a positive impact on the lives of others continues to grow. Like the number of people riding a rolling plank of wood continue to grow. If a few of us can make a big difference to a child in Cambodia, Afghanistan or Africa, regrow our forests for future generations to enjoy, imagine what we can accomplish if each of us just do our small part. I do hope you visit some of the sites here, just read what they are passionate about and share their stories with your friends.
“Go skateboarding day” is celebrated on the 21st of June due to the fact that the day is the longest day of summer (Northern Hemisphere). So I hope you get a lot of sunshine wherever you are. May your day be filled with skating, sharing, laughter and stoke.
While you enjoy this glorious day with your mates, your pack or your crew take a moment to think about how you can effect change. How will you make it better for yourself and hopefully for others. Maybe just start with a smile.
Now get your board, it’s time to skate. Ride safe!