Known for its empowering campaigns, Vans launched “Girls Skate India” as a way to engage young women on a global scale. The project is the kick-off to This Is Off The Wall, a campaign of empowerment through diverse stories. Now it’s expanding beyond India to teach girls worldwide how to skateboard with clinics starting on March 8th, International Women’s Day.
“We wanted to tell stories about the communities that grow around creative endeavors, whether it’s skateboarding, art, or music, these activities connect people with one another,” Jamie Reilly, Vans VP of Global Creative, stated.
“Vans has been engaging with creatives around the world for more than 50 years. Whether it’s making the first shoes for skateboarders, building skateparks, hosting concerts, or putting on art shows, we love how creativity brings individuals together where they can learn from and inspire each other.”
Girls Skate India
“Girls Skate India” tells the story of female skateboarders in a nation where girls have always played by society’s rules. But Atita Verghese, the founder of Girls Skate India, had another idea, teaming up with professional skateboarder and Vans athlete Lizzie Armanto to show local girls how empowering—and fun—skateboarding can be and to inspire them to keep skating.
The episode features Armanto and Verghese, both Vans athletes, showing how skating can be empowering and motivational, especially for young girls—some of whom are the only girl skaters in their villages.
International Women’s Day
Extending the campaign, Vans is teaching women and girls worldwide how to skateboard through a series of skate clinics on International Women’s Day, March 8. Vans will host more than 100 skateboarding clinics in various cities including Brooklyn, Chicago, London, St. Petersburg, Shanghai, Bangalore, São Paulo, and Mexico City.
“Vans is skateboarding, and we are committed to ensuring that anyone, anywhere has the opportunity to discover this unique form of creative expression,” says April Vitkus, Senior Director of Vans Global Brand Marketing. “We are hopeful that shining a light on skateboarding to girls and women will showcase how empowering it can be.”
@Regranned from @girlskateindia – The workshop in Janwaar went amazing!! With a much larger turn out than we initially thought possible when we heard there were only 3 girls in the village that skated. Girls in Janwaar are not allowed outside their homes. They're expected to stay at home and help with the cooking and cleaning while the boys go to the skate park. It looked dull initially but with positive pushes, encouragement and going door to door around the village and almost grabbing the girls out of their houses we managed to grab their attention. Hopefully they remember the good times and continue to break the chains. #girlskateindiatour #ruralchangemakers #janwaarcastle : @stew_bacca
Vans, a VF Corporation brand, is the original action sports footwear, apparel and accessories brand. Vans authentic collections are sold globally in more than 75 countries through a network of subsidiaries, distributors and international offices. Vans also owns and operates more than 450 retail locations around the world.
The Vans brand promotes the action sports lifestyle, youth culture and creative self-expression through the support of athletes, musicians and artists and through progressive events and platforms such as the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing®, the Vans U.S. Open of Surfing, Vans Pool Party, Vans Custom Culture, Vans Warped Tour®, and Vans’ cultural hub and international music venue, the House of Vans.
Off the Wall — the Video Series
Below, take a closer look at the Girls Skate India project: