The year began with a Holiday Club designed to occupy the free time of El Porvenir’s young people in a different and exciting way. We thought it would be good to repeat sandboarding, so we got back in touch with Wilson Ibáñez, the instructor in charge of this activity last year. He worked with us, providing us with the sandboards and his knowledge and experience as a teacher in schools, not to mention giving us the peace of mind of working with a professional sandboarder.
The instructor helped us from the start. He paid close attention to the safety of the children and the way they went about the activity. We sandboarded on Bolongo Hill in Alto Trujillo, a huge mountain of sand where the children could enjoy the sport once a week on a voluntary basis. It was a popular activity and the number of youngsters doing it gradually increased.
Wilson shared his know-how and helped us achieve our first runs down the hill. He showed us how to get the most out of sandboarding, how to improve our technique, and how not to get frustrated if we kept falling over. All in all, a healthy activity and an experience that everyone really enjoyed.
We asked one of the youngsters to write a short article about their experience of sandboarding, which you can read below.
~ Montse Garzon.
What do you think of sandboarding?
I think that it’s an enjoyable sport, which you can have fun doing. Sandboarding can help you to clear your mind. It’s a healthy sport that doesn’t hurt anyone and can be done by children and teenagers.
What is sandboarding?
It’s a sport that you do on sand using a board.
What’s your opinion of sandboarding?
I think that more young people in El Porvenir should know about it. Personally, I’d like it if there were events with sandboarding competitions. All the young people from El Porvenir could be invited to take part, and this would help to reduce the influence of gang culture.
How do you feel when you do sandboarding?
I felt relaxed, de-stressed and very happy doing the sport. When I started, I felt a little nervous and afraid, but when I started doing it, all that went away.
How do you think you could organise the events you mentioned earlier?
Working with the local government of El Porvenir, and the police, colleges and SKIP – all together they could make these events happen, for the benefit of the young people of El Porvenir.
~ Heidy Dayanne Valdiviezo Vasquez