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Amid the rubble of bombed-out buildings in Kabul, Afghanistan's capital, increases a joyous noise. Shrieks of laughter combination Together With all the rattle and clack of skateboard wheels because a set of children gets a opportunity to do something all too rare in their lives: just be kids. A program named Skateistan is giving them that opportunity.

 Until five Decades ago, none of them had seen a skateboard, Let alone ridden one. Afghanistan, a country in central Asia, was in war for years. Back in 2001, the U.S. and its allies invaded Afghanistan to attack Al Qaeda. That is the group responsible for the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks that killed nearly 3,000 men and women in the U.S.. The war, now in its 11th year, has led to the deaths of over 2,000 U.S. military employees.

 The kids of Kabul are Knowledgeable about the sounds of gunfire and The sight of troops on patrol and tanks . However, in 2007, something altogether different rode past: an Australian named Oliver Percovich (below) to a skateboard.

 Percovich, who'd moved to Kabul to be together with his aid-worker Girlfriend, immediately attracted a crowd of fascinated kids. He stopped to teach them how to do some simple tricks in their own--also Skateistan was first born.

 Percovich's organization now has two facilities in Afghanistan (see map). Each is a combination of faculty and skate park, offering hundreds of children a safe place to learn and perform with.

 "We now have students from a Enormous Variety of wallpapers: Literate and illiterate, rich and poor, different ethnicities," Percovich informs JS. "One of Skateistan's main aims is to build trust and understanding between (them)." Besides skateboarding, children may enjoy photography, art, theatre, and other creative activities.

 At Skateistan, almost as many girls as boys are practicing kick-flips, ollies, and truckstand spins. That is rare in Afghanistan, where until recently girls and girls were not even allowed to go to college or go out in public without long gowns and veils.

 "It feels great that we're having fun with them" States Durkhanai Stanekzai (dur-KAHN-eye stah-NEK-zay), 13. Once a Skateistan pupil, she's currently a paid instructor and able to help support her loved ones. "It is unique here," she states.

 "To many kids and their households, it is Tough to even Think about what is possible the next day," Percovich states. But, he adds,"in the short term, we place smiles in their faces."


* ethnicities (n): groups of people with the Exact racial, Religious, or cultural heritage and also a shared sense of individuality

 GDP stands for gross domestic product; per capita means"per person." The amount will be the value of most goods and services produced in a relying in a calendar year, divided by the populace. It often is used as a measure of a country's wealth.

 SOURCES: The World Factbook (CIA) and also 2012 World Population Data Sheet (Population Reference Bureau)


1. Skateistan has places where Afghan cities?

2. The location farther north is located near Afghanistan's border with Which three nations?

 3. What geographic feature forms part of that boundary?

4. A drive out of Kabul to the Khyber Pass--a narrow course through High hills --takes you throughout which city?

 5. The Khyber Pass joins Afghanistan and what country?

6. The U.S. army bases displayed in southern Afghanistan have been Between both waterways?

 7. Afghanistan's southernmost region is mainly What Type of terrain?

 8. A drive west out of Kabul requires you to that Afghan city revealed?

9. Which town is located closest to 32[degrees]N, 66[degrees]E?

10. What's the title of this narrow strip of Afghanistan that Benefits China?

 * How did a thing that Oliver Percovich did for fun evolve To a program targeted at enhancing children's lives? (RI 6.2)

* Consider his comment about the kids Skateistan serves in mild Of the cultural teams breakdown on p. 7. How might battle among the classes affect kids' lives? (RH 4)

* Along with the 2 places in Afghanistan,'' Skateistan Has opened programs in Islamabad, Pakistan, and Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

 * On September 8, 2012, four Skateistan kids were killed in a Suicide attack on NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) headquarters in Kabul. The children had been in their standard jobs, selling goods on the street outside ISAF. (For more on the story, go to

Write a brief proposal figuring out just how a task you enjoy Might be turned into a job that would assist people in need.

Are the Advantages of a program like Skateistan temporary or permanent?

* Students interested in encouraging Skateistan's work could find Suggestions about the best way best to assist at

 Notice: Unless you're able to make Exceptional arrangements, don't Plan on mailing products to Skateistan in Afghanistan. As founder Oliver Percovich Told us"There isn't a practical postal method in Afghanistan, therefore it is Almost impossible to find anything out of this country without paying . Lot of money."