Last January I got an offer to make a documentary in Ethiopia. A fascinating assignment, but a trip I knew would only be viable if I had a second story to document. Trying to avoid the obvious themes, from war to coffee, I eventually stumbled across the unexpected – a small skateboarding community in Addis Ababa.
After getting in touch, I was pretty confident that these kids from Ethiopia Skate were actually for real, so I started to collect skate gear and apparel as donations for them.
Once I arrived at their home spot, I was met by a friendly crew of kids, from early teens to late teens, all excited and curious to see inside the suitcase I hauled out of the car. On seeing the contents they were beyond stoked, picking out and putting on their chosen tee or hoody, then skating around wildly in front of my camera. They all hit up the spot so hard, determined to expose their skills and style to a wider world. A chance to fulfill their dreams of becoming pro skaters or at the very least inspire other kids to get off the streets, like they did. Alongside their skateboarding dreams lay ambitions to study as engineers, photographers, and in the case of one kid, Natty, to become the owner of a skatepark network across all of Ethiopia.
The next day I drove to the north of the country to shoot the documentary that had primarily brought me here. However I recognized that the true story was these kids.
On my return to Addis I spent my last afternoon with Henok, Natty, Teferi, Eyob, Jonathan and Blen. They welcome me back with such joy and happiness it was like being reunited with old friends. They were now all skating on the decks I’d previously given them. Naturally, ripping it as hard as they could until the sun set and I departed, knowing that two days with those kids had made my ten days in Ethiopia absolutely worth it. I already missed them, and only the thought of my daughter and wife waiting in Berlin made the journey back a little easier.
Back in Berlin I prepared an exhibition of my photographs that documents my time with Ethiopia Skate. At the same time an article telling the full story, was published in Lodown Magazine (#97). After two months in Berlin it'll be on show in Vienna, starting October 1st. Limited edition prints are being sold, with all profits used to buy and send gear to my new friends in Ethiopia, to help them expand their scene, and to get as many kids as possible off the streets and on to skateboards.
With this Crowdfunding I wish to finance another trip to Ethiopia, to continue my documentation of the community of Ethiopia Skate and to bring the donations, that I have collected, to Ethiopia. I wish to document (photography & video) their day to day life, like their families, their homes, school life... and by that get enough material to create a film documentary and a more detailed and fascinating exhibition.
My goal and desire is to show the world how simple it can be to bring joy and happiness to a kids world!
Was sind die Ziele und wer ist die Zielgruppe?
Everyone who is interested in supporting the establishment of a stable and vibrant generation in Ethiopia.
Warum sollte jemand dieses Projekt unterstützen?
The long distance makes it generally difficult to directly support young talents in this part of the world and our unique project aims to bridge this gap.
Was passiert mit dem Geld bei erfolgreicher Finanzierung?
The money will be used to finance another trip to Ethiopia, to continue my documentation of the community of Ethiopia Skate and to bring the donations, that I have collected, to Ethiopia. I wish to document (photography & video) their day to day life, like their families, their homes, school life... and by that get enough material to create a film documentary and a more detailed and fascinating exhibition.
1500,- Euro for flight expenses, internal travel and transport costs 500,- Euro production, packaging and worldwide delivery of rewards 400,- Euro V.A.T. and Startnext provision
If the fund raising goal of 2400 Euro is accomplished, all additional funds will be used directly to support children and teenagers in ethiopia with Ethiopia Skate.
Depending on the amount it will be used to: 1. buy new griptape, skateshoes, trucks and wheels that are needed 2. to build a SkatePark in Addis Abeba and document the construction
Wer steht hinter dem Projekt?
Daniel Reiter, born 1977 in Berlin. Photographer and Ambassador for Ethiopia Skate.