Skateboard Revolution: A Village’s Wheelie Act, Courtesy Children

Skateboard Revolution: A Village’s Wheelie Act, Courtesy Children

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In Janwaar, a small village in northern Madhya Pradesh, a quiet revolution is taking place. Skateboards are transforming the way the children and adults in this village think and act.

A German author, futurist & community activist named Ulrike Reinhard rode in the village in February 2015. Ulrike brought resources together to get it a 450 sqm skate-park that they named ‘Janwaar Castle’

Built in April 2015, it’s the first skate park in rural India and the largest one in the country. There was no need for formal admission or permission to play

Janwaar village kids skateboarding at Khajuraho. (Photo Courtesy: Vicky Roy)
Janwaar village kids skateboarding at Khajuraho. (Photo Courtesy: Vicky Roy)

Two Rules: ‘No School, No Skateboards’ & ‘Girls First’

The children embraced the park, took over ownership and responsibility. Ulrike’s team just put two basic rules: “No school – No skateboarding!”and “Girls First”. Now they find that the school attendance has gone up, the kids are much more committed and much more self-confident – and they smile.

Ulrike Reinhard and her team member <a href="https://www.facebook.com/mannan.gupta.5">Mannan Gupta</a> with the children of Janwaar. (Photo Courtesy: Vicky Roy)
Ulrike Reinhard and her team member Mannan Gupta with the children of Janwaar. (Photo Courtesy: Vicky Roy)
Children get an Adrenalin rush when skateboarding and then things like rains and sun cease to become obstacles. (Photo Courtesy: Vicky Roy)
Children get an Adrenalin rush when skateboarding and then things like rains and sun cease to become obstacles. (Photo Courtesy: Vicky Roy)

Changing the Social Fabric

Playing together in the skating arena, the children are engineering changes in the social fabric.

  • Untouchability,
  • gender inequality,
  • illiteracy, and
  • alcoholism

are being weeded out.

Janwaar Castle has become a learning camp with the skateboards driving the revolution.

When villages like Janwwar are throbbing with positivity, who would want to run to the cities?

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