Dive In for Charity at Swim for Hope 2014
By Nina Syahira
October 13, 2014
Last Sunday, the participants for SAFRA Swim for Hope 2014 swam a total of 72,049 laps for charity. This number was then translated to $72,049 in donation to the three beneficiaries; SAF Care Fund, Singapore Children’s Society and Aquatics Heart & Hope.
Thanks to the near four-fold increase in participation by NSmen and their families, the event was a great success. All was made possible with the extension of this good cause to the 5 SAFRA clubs across Singapore.
Joining our efforts in raising funds for our needy NSmen and underprivileged children were various groups like the Naval Diving Unit, the National Women's & Men's Water Polo Team and the Singapore Swimming Association. The power to help lies in just about anyone, as beautifully demonstrated by national Paralympic swimmers Theresa Goh and Yip Pin Xiu who also participated.
Amongst them is also national swimmer Russell Ong who couldn’t wait to dive in for his contribution to the cause since the press conference in June.
“I think the turnout was quite exciting so with the atmosphere going, I had quite a bit of fun! It’s a very good avenue for swimmers to give back to the charity. Not just swimmers but I think everybody in general,” said the 25-year-old who clocked in 50 laps.
“I think those who wanted to make it down [for the event] but couldn’t, they can still donate online so they don’t have to feel too bad!” he added with a grin.
Indeed, donations can still be made online here till 15th October 2014 so let’s continue giving even after the event is over.
Winners of Swim for Hope 2014 standing tall with Mr Chan Chun Sing, Second Minister for Defence and President of SAFRA and Col (NS) William Phua, Chairman of SAFRA Tampines Executive Committee
Sharing the same sentiment above is none other than 2-time winner of the ‘individual’ category Vincent Koh. The 40-year-old production manager even broke his own record from last year with a total of 342 laps this time which he had promised himself that he would do. Not only that, he’s also a proud dad as his two wonderful kids followed in his footsteps with their own attempt to help raise funds for charity.
“I think it’s really good as it helps to motivate other people and this year, seeing that the bar just went up, other people would also need to do more laps to help raise funds. So each year, I’m sure that the amount they raise would go much higher,” Vincent said when asked about the benefits of viewing such sports-driven charity events as a competition.
For those who are inspired by the man’s accomplishment, check out our interview with him on training tips here.
There had also been concerns about the weather that day, particularly the threat of the haze. With regular updates throughout the event on social media, participants were able to do their part in the water safely.
This was useful information especially for participating NSmen with their families, including team Manta Ray who attained first place in the group category. They made sure to take care of each other with as many breaks in between as needed including drinking enough water during the race.
Mr Chan Chun Sing, President of SAFRA, was happy to see how well the charitable cause has been received by not only NSmen, but also NSFs as well as SAFRA members and their loved ones. He spoke with some of the participants at the pool side and even offered his gratitude to those who had been helping to run things smoothly since the start of the event.
He also expressed his wish to see more participants at the next Swim for Hope event which he believed wouldn’t be an impossible feat.
We thank you for your generous support for SAFRA Swim for Hope 2014 and we hope to see you again at the next event.
Online donations are still open till 15th October 2014 so be sure to drop by this page to make your contribution today. Keep the spirit of giving alive!