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Oliver Percovich first skated in an empty pool, while growing up in Papua New Guinea. In 2007, as a young adult, he moved to Afghanistan from Australia when his girlfriend took a job in Kabul, and brought along his skateboard. Little did he know how fateful that decision would become…


Feeling bored in Afghanistan’s desolate capital, Percovich took to skating the beleaguered city, and became a sort of pied half-piper, attracting street kids that would follow him around and ask for rides.

''I was really interested to see that girls as well as boys wanted to skate. I didn't see girls doing any other kinds of sports, so I thought that this was maybe something worth looking into.''

— Oliver Percovich, Skatistan founder

Seeing the positive impact skating had on the children — especially the girls — Percovich founded Skateistan, a grassroots ‘Sport for Development’ project on the streets of Kabul.


Today, Skateistan is an award-winning international organization with projects in Afghanistan, Cambodia and South Africa.

The non-profit is the first international development initiative to combine skateboarding with educational outcomes.

Non-political, independent, and inclusive of all ethnicities, religions and social backgrounds, Skatistan offers both skating and general education classes for over 1000 boys and girls each week.