The Tony Hawk Foundation is embarking on a new initiative to seek out stories from skatepark communities. They want to hear how skateboarding has affected the life of young skateboarders in a meaningful way and posted three questions:

  1. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT SKATEBOARDING?
  2. HOW HAVE SKATEPARKS OR SKATEBOARDING CHANGED YOUR LIFE?
  3. WHAT IS YOUR MOST MEMORABLE POSITIVE EXPERIENCE AT A SKATEPARK?

I’ve told this to our kids and yes, they were challenged. They even made video by themselves. Here are the results.

Arun interviewing Vinay Adivasi, 11 years old

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT SKATEBOARDING?
When I come to the skatepark, I feel very good. When I skateboard I feel like I am flying.

HOW HAVE SKATEPARKS OR SKATEBOARDING CHANGED YOUR LIFE?
Before the skatepark was built I never went to the school. 
After the skatepark was built I started to go to school everyday and I started focussing on my studies.
No school, no skateboarding.

WHAT IS YOUR MOST MEMORABLE POSITIVE EXPERIENCE AT A SKATEPARK?
A skateboarding competition happened in our village. 
People from far away came and I was also there.

————–

Arun interviewing Priyanka Yadav, 14 years old

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT SKATEBOARDING?
(instead she was asked – what do you think about skateboarding?)
I feel very good when everyone plays with me. We play together.

HOW HAVE SKATEPARKS OR SKATEBOARDING CHANGED YOUR LIFE?
I learned that we should not fight, help everyone and go to school.
Earlier I didn’t go to school and spoke very rudely to others. Ever since the skatepark I speak well to others and am also able to learn well

WHAT IS YOUR MOST MEMORABLE POSITIVE EXPERIENCE AT A SKATEPARK?
In 2016 there was a competition happened. Just one day before the competition, I fell while jumping(ollie) and injured my head. At first I  thought I would not be able to participate. But I kept trying and even won a skateboard.

————–

Arun Adivasi, 15 years old, being interviewed by Tonmoy

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT SKATEBOARDING?
(instead he was asked – what do you think about skateboarding?)
I feels good. When people come from outside, we interact with them. From some we learn new tricks which feels good. Some people come to see how we skate and spread our story to far off places. They spread awareness about our village

HOW HAVE SKATEPARKS OR SKATEBOARDING CHANGED YOUR LIFE?
Before the skate I didn’t go to school. We made a rule – “No school No skateboarding” so I stared going to school. When foreign people came we had to converse in English, so I used to sit with them and learn English. 
Earlier I was afraid to travel. Because of the skatepark I started travelling and now I am confident enough to travel alone also. There were many things I can do on my own now.

WHAT IS YOUR MOST MEMORABLE POSITIVE EXPERIENCE AT A SKATEPARK?
In 2016, a competition happened in Janwaar. People from around the world came here. I also participated. Skating with them was a lot of fun. I also wan a competition
We enjoyed a lot with them – danced and had a lot of fun party. 
It always remember those moments.

————–

Arun interviewing Selen Singh Yadav, 15 years old

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT SKATEBOARDING?
(instead he was asked – what do you think about skateboarding?)
I think that there should be many more skateparks and bigger competitions like the one happened in November 2016.

HOW HAVE SKATEPARKS OR SKATEBOARDING CHANGED YOUR LIFE?
I can speak better English now. The way we live our lives has improved.

WHAT IS YOUR MOST MEMORABLE POSITIVE EXPERIENCE AT A SKATEPARK?
Because of skateboarding, I went to Jaipur to participate in street play in the Jaipur Literature Festival. I enjoy a lot there.

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Asha Gond, 18 years old, sent me her written answers

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT SKATEBOARDING?

My favorite thing about skatebarding is “olie”.

HOW HAVE SKATEPARKS OR SKATEBOARDING CHANGED YOUR LIFE? 

I’m not afraid of people any more. Girls in the village get married very early. Because of skateboarding I will not get married at an early stage.

WHAT IS YOUR MOST MEMORABLE POSITIVE EXPERIENCE AT A SKATEPARK?
My favorite memories is of the first workshop on the skatepark. Because of that workshop i went to London and got so many good opportunities …

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