We are delighted to announce a brand-new fundraising event for children and young people called Swim 68, which will see 8-16 year olds take on the challenge of swimming 68 lengths of a pool throughout June – all to raise vital funds for homeless people in Reading.
The first event specifically for this age group, participants are asked to swim 68 lengths to reflect the number of people in housing crisis we support each month. So, with every length a child or young person swims, they are helping one homeless person in Reading.
Swimmers can complete the lengths in any number of pools – at school, at a local leisure centre or as part of their swimming lessons – and the number of lengths in each swimming session can be organised however they’d like. E.g., participants could swim 17 lengths every week for four weeks. The only stipulation is that all lengths are completed by 30 June 2022.
We’ve partnered with Better, who manage Reading’s leisure centres, to offer participants a free swimming session at one of three local pools to help children and young people complete the challenge. When participants sign up, they also receive a Launchpad silicone swimming hat and a swim tracker poster to tick off the lengths as they go!
Kirsti Wilson, Head of Marketing and Fundraising at Launchpad, said about the new event: “We help 68 people in Reading get back on their feet every month – and our services do this in lots of different ways. We give rough sleepers a safe place to sleep in our supported housing and our teams also help anyone in the community who is worried about losing their home. Launchpad 135 is our work and life skills centre and it offers people who were homeless the opportunity to learn new skills, build confidence and get back into work.
“By taking part in this new and exciting challenge, children and young people in Reading will raise vital funds to ensure we can continue providing these vital services for local people in need. We are delighted to be working with Better, and local schools and parents in the area, to encourage 8-16 year olds to take on the challenge, make a splash for cash and help homeless people. And we can’t wait to see the youth of Reading sporting our bright orange swim hats!”
We are asking each swimmer to raise a minimum of £150 – either by filling out sponsorship forms or via JustGiving. If just 100 children take on this challenge, they could raise as much as £15,000 to support our work with people who are homeless or at risk of losing their home.