Cayman’s Black Pearl Skate Park is being used more than just for fun, says one social worker, adding it’s a tool that he’s been using to fix Cayman’s social problems of delinquency and segregation.
Cayman 27’s Philipp Richter recently stopped by to see exactly how.
“Biggest challenges we have found is that youth are bored, they are unsupervised in unstructured times and they are getting themselves in issues. Over the last six years, we’ve had well over 300 kids who have been charged in youth court,” Chairman of the Cayman Islands Skateboard Association Michael Myles said.
Scooter rider Matthew Lloyd-Hickey says it’s a way to build confidence.
“A lot of people encourage you and make you do more things, because they want to see you get better and progress more,” Lloyd-Hickey said.
“You get to get new tricks, you always get stoked about them, you get to meet lots of new friends because lots of people come on different days.”
Mr. Myles says he knows the issues that are facing Cayman.
“Over the last 15 to 20 years , the family is eroded, communities, complete communities have been gutted,” he said.
He says the park instills confidence and conversation as young people from around Cayman gather here, and he says that will go a long way in keeping them on the right track.
“What I love to see here more than anything is that children do not care where they live or where they are from when they walk in those gates. They don’t care. They show each other the tricks. They show each other skills. They are passing certain things onto each other, that’s what this is about,” he said.