Swimmers from across Canada will hit the waters of the Northumberland Strait this Sunday for “The Big Swim.”
The 15-kilometer swim from New Brunswick to Prince Edward Island is hosted by “Give to Live,” a group that inspires people to live happy and healthy lives through generosity, fitness and achievement of the extraordinary.
Moncton’s Sarah Currie will take part in the swim for the first time, wearing a wetsuit with the names of those she is swimming for penned on the back.
“The names that I put on the back of my suit is basically anyone who has been affected by long term illness or any kind of chronic disease, just people I want to swim for and remember when I am out there and they have my back when I am out there,” Currie said.
Sarah’s father and coach, Jim Currie will be paddling alongside for her first swim across the strait.
“My job is to ensure that Sarah goes straight, that Sarah is fueled and supported emotionally,” Jim said.
“You don’t want your child to get hurt or get sick but she can handle it — we are going to be side by side.”
“The Big Swim” organizer, Kerri-Ann Hillier says the goal of the event is to raise money to send Maritime children with chronic illnesses to Brigadoon Village camp in Nova Scotia.
“It’s a summer camp programming for children who have a chronic illness condition or special needs. Basically there is a group of children who may not have a chance to go to summer camp anywhere else, but with Brigadoon’s, facilities we can accommodate them,” Hillier said.
She says more than 60 swimmers from across the country will take to the water starting at 5:00 a.m. Sunday at Cape Tormentine in New Brunswick. They’ll swim 15 kilometres across the strait to P.E.I.
Sarah says the swim is not a race. It will likely take her more than four grueling hours to complete.
“I think of all those kids who are going through struggles on a daily basis. I kind of said if they can handle that their whole lives, I think I can handle four or five or six hours of pain and struggle,” Sarah said.
“I think my biggest concern is the weather and dealing with any kind of seasickness you can get, cause it actually can affect you.”