WWSET are proud to report that during Feb – Apr 2022 we delivered a hugely successful 13-week skateboarding project that targeted young females from the local refugee community.
The aim of the project was to bring the girls together in a relaxed and fun environment and allow them to try a sport that they may not have previously had the opportunity to get involved in. Further to this WWSET recognised that the sessions would hopefully allow the participants to build new friendships, realise the physical benefits that skateboarding can facilitate, and improve the girls confidence and resilience with regards to trying new (and somewhat tricky to perfect) activities.
Over the course of the project, which was kindly funded by Leap, our local Active Partnership via their Moving Our Communities fund, 14 individual participants were engaged. Each week the skaters took part in sessions that were delivered by a coach from Skateboard Academy UK as well as a local female volunteer who is in the process of completing the Skateboard GB course and who was a great positive female role model and inspiration to the children.
Throughout the project we watched the girls grow hugely in terms of their confidence and ability. At the start all but one child had never been on a skateboard, so this was a totally new experience for them, and we were so impressed by their positive attitude in wanting to have a go. The coach allowed time each week for the girls to celebrate each other’s achievements and the constant praise he gave allowed the children to really feel good about what they were achieving.
By being part of the group the girls formed their own friendships were always smiling, and the reports from their parents illustrated how much the girls loved taking part.
One of the participants had this to say about the project:
“We’ve learnt to do many tricks including a tic tac, tail stump and so much more. We can always talk to one another because we trust one another. We have formed a little community that supports each other. We are all friends and help each other. We’ve learnt so much and have grown in confidence and hope to carry on in the future.”
Simon Wears, WWSET’s Head of Health, who led the project added:
“It was amazing to see how much the girls, many of whom have had challenging starts in life, engaged with both skateboarding and each-other. On the first week none of them really knew each other but friendships soon blossomed, and everybody had a great time. I’d like to place on record our thanks to Skateboard Academy UK and also Wycombe Refugee Partnership who both provided fantastic support throughout the project.”
We are pleased to confirm that our sessions are now self sustaining with Millbrook School hosting the sessions with an inspirational female skateboarder delivering the sessions.
In addition, we’re pleased to report that off the back of our project, Millbrook School (where the project took place) have now started two after school skateboard sessions of their own as they recognised how much the sessions were enjoyed by those who took part.