ONE OF THE MOST enduring ways to build strength in a community is through a shared project. Plant a seed and the concept of a neighborhood’s structural unity can emerge straight from any approved plot of land! That’s right, a skateboard park – and not just any ol’ corner lot with attractive landscaping. We’re talking a lively, interactive space where youth come together to have fun and generate positive energy flow. By establishing a center for creative activity, skateboard parks become a beacon for kids, drawing them away from the more negative influences that can pressure other parts of their world.
Bridge to Skate skateboard projects organize citizens around a meaningful purpose and demonstrate an amazing way of literally building hope in a community. The lasting benefits are tough to calculate, as the newly constructed skateboard park builds momentum and becomes a preferred destination for creative expression in a positive and non-violent environment. The effect tends to ripple through the community, giving adults, who are encouraged to help lead the construction effort, ownership in the happiness of their children as well as a model for getting along. That can have bottom-line economic benefits as well. If you’ve ever heard the term “it takes a village” and then wondered what “it” looks like, visit a BTS skateboard park!
For every approved skateboard construction project in an underserved community, BTS proposes developing a playground next to it. We appreciate that not everyone is able to skateboard, or is old enough. For these kids, and especially parents, an adjoining park, complete with swing set and other equipment, provides a safe haven for having fun and enjoying the outdoors. Kids of all ages gravitate to active parks, and because the playground is built in conjunction with the skateboard park, environmental safety concerns are greatly reduced. One benefits the other, and both feed the invested community interest. Always, a system for administering both is put into place upon completion of the parkland, which is maintained by the community.
With exercise comes education, and vice-versa. The two can’t be separated when it comes to living a healthy and fulfilled life. An extension of the BTS concept of providing community support, our school development efforts have already led to changing lives. Our goal, where needed and endorsed, is to complete the “trifecta” – skateboard park, playground and school – in order to give the local community a strong foundation of growth that can lift it from impoverished circumstances over generations.
Many schools outside the main cities in Central America do not have much of a curriculum. We try to assist these schools in purchasing books – as well as give them new and used book donations so students have proper reading materials to enhance their reading level. If you have a Spanish language book you are no longer reading, please consider donating it! Contact Bridge to Skate and we’ll arrange the pickup.
Perlas de Oriente
Bridge to Skate is planning to add to the skateboard park and playground we’ve built in Perlas de Oriente, a small mountain village in Honduras. The children in Perlas de Oriente are currently adding skateboarding to their normal physical education classes. It’s exciting to see!
Tegucigalpa Skateboard Project
Bridge to Skate is building a skateboard park in the Capital City of Honduras, Tegucigalpa. The land was donated by the government and the skateboarders are willing to do all unskilled labor on the project. One of our youth leaders from South Central L.A., Damonte Tillman, is leading the project and recently launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise the necessary funds to build this dream for the youth and future generations in one of our favorite cities!
La Escuela Mendoza
We’ve done it! Bridge to Skate has completed construction of our first school. La Escuela Mendoza is located in the small mountain village of Los Laureles, in southeastern Honduras. Our adobe building hosts 27 students and one teacher. It’s the start of something that promises to grow bigger in Los Laureles, and elsewhere around the world as BTS gains a foothold in communities that require new infrastructure and resource support.