As you may know, Cecily's Fund has six places in the one-mile swim at this year's Swim Serpentine. Last year was the first event - here are five great reasons why you should take the leap in 2017, swim the mile and fundraise for us!
1) It's Part of the London Marathon Family
Swim Serpentine is organised by the same team that run the UK's biggest and most successful fundraising event - the London Marathon. The Marathon has been running since 1981 and raises millions for charities every year - Swim Serpentine is just starting out, but has the same organisational powerhouse behind it. You can expect a fantastic, well-run event if you take part in Swim Serpentine on September 16.
2) Swimming Will Make You Stand Out from the Crowd
Running is the most popular activity for fundraisers, and while it's a great way to generate money it's also a familiar one. By signing up to swim a mile, you'll be doing something much less common: and that might make it a bit easier to get your friends and family to sponsor you.
3) It's Easier Than You Think
Swimming a mile outdoors can sound daunting, especially if you're not a regular swimmer. It's for that reason that you'll have to train to prepare yourself for this event. However, don't be put off - swimming a mile is definitely doable and easier than you think, as our 2016 swimmers discovered. The organisers also provide a training plan.
4) We've Got Your Back
While we can't be in the water with you on the day, Cecily's Fund can support your fundraising efforts. We'll promote your fundraising page on all of our social media channels, sharing any posts of your own. We'll also link to your page from our website, and spread the word in any other way we can. We can advise you on how best to fundraise, and we provide a fundraising pack full of helpful tips.
5) Your Fundraising Changes Lives
Every pound you can raise for Cecily's Fund by taking part in Swim Serpentine will really help us to change lives in Zambia. Just £50 is enough for us to keep a child in school for a year, and £250 can enable us to provide five small business grants - helping young people get a business off the ground and secure a vital income for themselves.
Cecily's Fund is excited to announce The Zam Challenge - a special 5-a-side football tournament organised in partnership with Burford School. Donate whatever you can to support our work in Zambia and our 20th anniversary!
Burford School Sixth Form have generously adopted Cecily's Fund as their charity for 2017 - and as part of their fundraising efforts, they're co-organising and hosting The Zam Challenge on Friday June 9. It's sure to be a brilliant evening of competition, which with your help will also raise a great total to enable us to change even more young lives in Zambia.
Four teams will compete - one Cecily's Fund team consisting of family and friends of our staff, and three teams from Burford School. They're playing not only for pride but also for a unique trophy and additional awards, including Man of the Match, top goalscorer and best goalkeeping.
The Cecily's Fund team needs your support! Visit our JustGiving page today to make a donation, then post a message for our team. They would love to win the trophy, and your words of encouragement could make all the difference!
We'll be sharing all the action from the six matches online, so be sure to keep an eye on the #zamchallenge hashtag on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. We'll also be publishing a post-tournament report here on the Cecily's Fund website.
It takes just a few clicks to make your Zam Challenge donation, but your support will make a real difference in the lives of orphaned and vulnerable children in Zambia. Just £5 is enough to help support our feeding programme at BISO Community School, while £15 helps us support a community savings group. For every £50 we raise, we can support a child at school for a year. So please - donate today, help us make a difference, and cheer on the Cecily's Fund team!