Steve Balls, the founder of Riverside Skate Park, is a very socially concerned person that has invested a large part of his fortune to great projects in various communities. And right from the start it was a clear demand that the skate park should serve as a type of community center that actively tries to attract the young people of the town, and offer them various projects that might help them.
There are a variety of projects, including educational courses. Most of the projects are centered in activities in the park, but there are others that we try to implement in the community as a whole.
It is the Riverside Skate Park’s administration and board who are in charge of these projects, and it is always decided on in late December of each year which projects will be prioritized the next year. This year we have a particular focus on the theme called “My Friend” which is an initiative which has the goal of stopping bullying in schools and the community as a whole. This project is also funded by the government, and has had such great results that we are planning to roll it out nationwide in a large scale operation in two years. This comes at a time when Steve has committed to opening up 50 more skate parks just like the one here in Riverside, and our own park will serve as an example for the rest.
In addition to the larger social projects we also have more practical projects here at the center. We have talked about the educational courses that we offer, but we also have projects like our communications team. This team is concerned with all things that has to do with the communication that the center does to its members as well as the rest of the world. They are responsible for the set up and most of the content of the web site, and to this end they are constantly recording videos that they put up on the site as well as on social media like Facebook, YouTube and Snapchat. They also do some writing in addition to publishing a weekly podcast. In this podcast they talk to relevant people from the park, either users or people from the administration. But the communications group also brings in interesting people from outside of the camp, including making long distance interviews with many interesting people.
We also have an art group which is responsible for making all the nice graffiti that you see all around the campus.