5th May 2021
Writing: Ben Jackson (Year 12)
Editing: Aayush Mukherjee (Year 11)
This July, 3 of my friends and I are swimming the English Channel as a relay for a charity that is very close to our hearts, Liberty's Legacy. Even through her fight, Liberty would always be concerned about other people’s feelings above her own which was one of the reasons why Liberty’s Legacy was created. Liberty didn’t want other children to go through what she did, she wanted to spread awareness about Ewing Sarcoma which had treatments which were decades old. Liberty introduced me to the swimming club Chalfont Otters which ultimately led to us sharing a passion for swimming. I have chosen to swim the channel because that’s when I feel closest to Liberty and I know that she will be with us the whole way across giving us the strength to swim.
Originally we were meant to complete the swim in September 2020, however unfortunately the weather conditions were too harsh and prevented us from attempting it in the timeframe we were provided. Over the summer we would mainly train in the Jubilee river, swimming in cold temperatures using goose fat to keep ourselves warm, as well as training at night which would allow us to experience swimming in the dark which is a major possibility when we swim in the sea. We also travelled to Dover and Brighton to practice swimming in the harsh conditions of the sea which were completely different to the pool. We have a week's window in the summer (14th-21st of July) to complete the swim and the captain of our boat will decide the best day for us to swim. The better the conditions, the higher chance of us completing the swim as if the tides are not at their optimum we could be swept off course.
In terms of fundraising we have reached out to family and friends for their generous donations and social media has played a large part in the distribution of our link. Unfortunately, due to covid, we haven't been able to complete as many fundraising events as we hoped, however, we were able to organise a few fundraising events pre-covid such as a party which took place in December 2019. So far we have raised over £15,500 (including gift aid). The link for the donation page is: https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fundraiser-display/showROFundraiserPage?userUrl=libertyslegacyswim&pageUrl=5
I am really excited to complete this challenge and to raise money for an amazing charity.