Dip a Day December returns
28th November, 2018
Advent is upon us, so it can only mean one thing for OSS Ambassador Ella Foote – Dip a Day December returns, and this year she’s looking for 31 swimmers to join her
2018 will be the third year that OSS Ambassador Ella Foote embarks on her challenge to swim every day in December. She first took up the challenge in December 2016 as a way of raising money for the homeless, in 2017 she added the challenge of swimming in a new place every day and themed her posts on mental health and achieving a state of ‘Merry Calm’ness’ over Christmas. This year she is making the challenge that she swims a new person every day, as a way of talking about isolation and supporting Mind UK’s Christmas appeal.
“I want to raise the profile of isolation at this time of year and instead of just swimming every day in December, I would also like to swim with a different person each day,” says Ella. “I am seeking a range of people to dip with across the month, including Christmas Day. It doesn’t have to be a river, lake or ocean – it could be a lido, it just has to be outside! We don’t have to cover any kind of distance, it could be getting in and submerging, or it could be 25 meters. The point is to come together, dip and chat. A chance to embrace our bodies, push our minds and fight the urge to isolate at what can be a really horrible time for so many and for so many reasons.”
Tom Gregory, author of Sports Book of the Year, A Boy in the Water, is scheduled to swim with Ella, as well as Urban Mermaid Lindsey Cole and writer Alexandra Heminsley. Ella is happy to travel, but is also welcoming swimmers in her patch of the River Thames in Berkshire. Water temperatures are already hovering around the five degree mark, a lot cooler than this time last year.
I would like to swim with a different person each day. I am seeking a range of people to dip with across the month, including Christmas Day. We don’t have to cover any kind of distance. The point is to come together, dip and chat. A chance to fight the urge to isolate at what can be a really horrible time for so many and for so many reasons.
“This year I am hoping to raise £21 per day for each day of December – just £651 in total,” says Ella. “£21 could run Mind UK online peer support community, Elefriends, for an hour, helping people connect with others and feel less alone. Every two hours, someone in England and Wales takes their own life. This can’t go on.”
In 2016 Ella used ‘Dip A Day December’ to raise money and awareness of homelessness (see her favourite spots on wildswim), in 2017 she focused on awareness of mental health and supporting The Blurt Foundation’s Instagram Challenge to a Merry Calm-ness.