De Lange’s Sunday Skate School builds ‘safe place’ for skateboarding community
Downhill skateboarder Jaime De Lange has more plans beyond winning races and excelling in the sport he loves.
He wants to build a community of local skaters.
At 24, he made those plans come true by establishing a Sunday Skate School, a venue where everyone who wants to take up the sport is welcome.
De Lange said the idea came prior to the 2019 Southeast Asian Games — where he bagged the gold medal.
“People were messaging me about the sport, asking me questions about how and where to start,” he said.
“I was getting more questions, so I thought, why not make a platform about it.”
Thus, the Sunday Skate School was born last January. The idea was to have a safe place for free, with a goal of building a community to popularize the sport.
It won’t be easy since the local skate culture is not as mainstream as basketball, volleyball or boxing, but De Lange said he was glad to have 60 to 70 people regularly engaging with the project.
Though the program took a toll due to quarantine restrictions brought by the coronavirus pandemic, De Lange said they continue to communicate and keep the project going.
Aside from Sunday Skate School, De Lange is also part of a skate merchandising company called “Naysh Worldwide.”
Recently, they started a small project by donating facemasks for medical frontliners and delivery workers.
De Lange said the pandemic taught him to use his platform to reach out to those in need.
“The situation we are in now, it showed me that if you have the opportunity to help, you do it,” he said.