Today, national spinal injury charity Aspire will be launching its 2016 annual fundraising challenge to raise money for people paralysed by spinal cord injuries.
The annual Aspire Channel Swim, now in its 17th year, invites people of all ages to swim the length of the English Channel over a 12-week period starting from 12 September and finishing on 5 December 2016.
Fundraisers can participate as individuals or as a team and can complete the 22-mile challenge at their local swimming pool, at their own pace. Participants record their lengths on an individual online challenge page, which keeps them updated of where they are on their channel crossing. This page can be shared with friends, family and other supporters.
As they progress, the charity’s swimmers will earn a place on the Aspire Channel Swim leader board, going head to head with other fundraisers across the country. The leader board also lets participants see if there are other swimmers taking part in the challenge in their local pool.
The Aspire Channel Swim is free to enter and all funds raised go towards helping people paralysed by Spinal Cord Injury. This year, the charity is aiming to raise over half a million pounds, which could fund more than 150 lightweight wheelchairs and convert more than 20 flats into accessible accommodation for people with spinal cord injuries.
Katy Boyd, Aspire Events Manager said: ‘In 2015, the Aspire Channel Swim raised £454,000 to provide grants and equipment for men and women in the UK who have been paralysed by spinal cord injury. We’re aiming to have more than 6,000 swimmers signed up for the challenge, so we are hoping to smash that total with this year’s event, especially as there is greater interest in swimming and being active following the success of British swimmers and athletes in Rio.’
Aspire was founded in 1982 to provide practical help and assistance to the 40,000 people living with a spinal cord injury in the UK so they can lead fulfilled and independent lives in their homes, with their families.
For more information please visit www.aspirechannelswim.co.uk or www.aspire.org.uk