Sad news from Skateistan, a Kabul-based NGO that teaches Afghan children to skateboard. A suicide attack killed a number of young Afghans, four of them students of the school. (Our previous Skateistan post’s headline seems darkly ironic now.)
“The bomb was detonated outside of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) HQ, where many of the street working children of Kabul sell trinkets, scarves and chewing gum to help support their families,” the site reports.
Of course, any loss of life to a suicide bombing is tragic andsenseless, but it is all the more heartbreaking because of the hopefulness in their skating.
At the school, 14-year-old instructor Khorshid, was a role model to the other girls who participated, and “stood apart with a tough, cheeky and sensitive personality, smiling no matter what troubles she had to deal with day-to-day. She knew what she wanted in life and wasn’t afraid to fight for it despite having more responsibilities and sorrows than a child should ever have,” according to a memorial on the Skateistan site.
Some of the female students Khorshid taught wished to share their memories:
“She was very brave and gave this courage to all of us girls.”
“She was always telling us to be brave like the boys and then no one would dare to touch us.”
Her students had fond memories of Khorshid, who put on a tough act but had a huge heart.
“She always wanted us to go down the big ramp,” one girl said, adding that one day Khorshid told her not to be scared:
“If you are scared you end up doing nothing and without doing you cannot achieve anything. But if you do things, all that can happen is you succeed or fail” Khorshid told her.
The girl then practiced so many times but could never get it right. Khorshid then told her to simply close here eyes and imagine herself succeeding, and on the next attempt she managed it. The girl now does this for every trick she practices and says, “Khorshid is alive within me, alive in the courage I now have.”’