Press Statement –– As Nigeria’s foremost skate brand established in 2012, it was with upmost gratitude that we marked our 10th anniversary on April 3rd. It’s been an amazing journey filled with surreal opportunities and culture defining milestones.
Over the past decade, we’ve been opportuned to collaborate with brands such as Alara, Oscar Deen, Homecoming, Nolly Babes, Patta, Engineering Sports, renowned Nigerian artist, Jimi Solanke and more.
Over the years, we have spearheaded the growth of the skate culture in Nigeria by supporting young people who have the interest and talent for the sport. waf. as a skateboarding community, organized the first-ever Go Skate Day — which is June 21st (a day dedicated to celebrating the sport across communities around the world) — in Nigeria in 2017 and has since then become an annual event that has only gotten better each year. The 2021 edition was its biggest as it spanned 10-days leading to the actual day. It included crews from all over Africa, a series of exciting events and a skateboarding contest with a grand prize.
In a bid to continuously encourage and grow the skate community, we decided to support the female skateboarders here. Inspired by Blessing Ewona, the first notable female Nigerian skateboarder and founder of all-female skate crew, Dencity, we released the Ble-Ble Magazine. This project is aimed at fostering inclusivity within the sport and empowering other female skaters.
A major highlight in this decade-long journey was facilitating the journey of Henry Okwubuasi into being a professional skateboarder. Henry’s amazing work ethic and undeniable talent has since become a major inspiration to the youth beyond Lagos borders, hence why he had our full support and appreciation. In celebration of him being the first black Pro Skater in Nigeria, a skate video titled ‘GLORY’ was made to highlight his journey and wins in the community.
We have consistently hosted quarterly skate jams that encourage healthy competition and promote skate culture in Nigeria. Our VIBES platform, which usually goes hand in hand with our skate jams, is a series that was launched to showcase the best DJs and musicians within the scene, promoting Lagos’ underground scene — a congregate of Nigerian youths of different backgrounds that have helped nurture this subculture.
As there is no designated space for skating in Lagos, we are super excited to announce our Partnership with Freedom Park which aims to establish the WAF Skate Park. This first-of-its-kind project in Nigeria hopes to be an Avenue for youth development, cultural and cross-generational development.
We are forever grateful for the community that we have built and has helped us grow through the years. As said by our team’s Senior Creative Designer, Addy, in an interview with Bounce Networks, “Everyone sees waf. from the outside and it looks all fresh, fly and clean but there’s a whole lot going on behind the scenes. There have been numerous sleepless nights, blood, sweat, and tears. People have worked tirelessly. It’s been crazy. If this was something that had been done before, it would have been much easier to draw inspiration or learn from others but this is unprecedented, at least here in Nigeria. It’s just been us failing our way forward.” This dedication for what we do, is what has kept the fire burning and the brand going.
Thanks to our amazing team & sponsors — Power Horse and Jameson — our 10th anniversary party, which took place April 9th, was filled with overwhelming love and support from our community. It was amazing to be surrounded by those who have been a part of our journey celebrating the brand and its achievements.
We look forward to the next decade and beyond, as we set new standards, hit even higher goals, grow our community and expand our reach.
To 10 more years of waf!