COMBINING passions of skateboarding and bringing about change in the world has led to the formation of non-profit organisation Nebula which seeks to empower young people through the sport.
Nebula was founded last year by 23-year-old Bergvliet resident Rayne Moses who hoped to assist young people in following their dreams.
“Nebula is an interstellar cloud where stars are born. That’s what we do, create stars through skateboarding.”
Moses said the organisation worked with Luzuko Primary in Gugulethu and Beauvallon Secondary in Valhalla Park.
He hoped to soon also work with schools in Langa and Hanover Park. On Tuesdays and Thursdays Moses assisted pupils with their schoolwork for an hour and then skated with them for an hour.
On Saturdays the organisation conducted personal development workshops for two hours and then skated for two hours.
In the workshops the children learned self-awareness, leadership and emotional intelligence, self-discipline, and self-expression, Moses said.
The organisation included two full-time staffers and three or four volunteers.
“We are looking to expand to run our programme in different schools. In 2018 we are hoping to have our own skate plaza, with a youth cafe and place to run the workshops.”
Moses said the children loved the skateboarding.
“They are really committed to it. It is a new sport for them, and they are learning and progressing really fast. At the same time, we teach them it is more than skating, they need to succeed in school and perform academically. We try to instil a mindset to keep a balance between skating and school. They are getting that and understand that.”
Independent photographer Jacques Smit had visited Luzuko Primary for one of the studying and skating sessions.
He created a photo essay titled GrindWithPurpose which captured the pupils at work and play.
“It is awesome, the type of energy you find there is electrifying. They laugh and they smile and bump into each other. Kids mingling and helping each other. They love the skating.”
Smit said the pupils’ positive energy had been infectious.