Starting Thursday afternoon at the Lineberry Natatorium, the Colgate men’s swim team began a 48-hour swim-a-thon for Kids Action for Kids, a charity organization founded by myself.
The charity works with Operation Smile to fund surgeries for children born with cleft lips and cleft palates in Thailand and Myanmar. Dtac, a Thai telecom giant, matches every donation. The team completed this event in shifts, as groups of three to four swimmers each had four three-hour shifts, each swimmer completing a mile at a time.
The men in speedos completed over 130 miles in the 48 hour window, averaging about 12 miles each, and raised over $7,000, which will be doubled by Dtac.
As each surgery costs around $800 (half of which is covered by Dtac), the team raised enough to fund 18 life-changing surgeries. These surgeries are more impactful than one might think. These children struggle with malnutrition, resulting in many of them not making it past their first birthday.
The part of the world in which these children live is also a relatively superstitious and religious region, and some believe being born with this condition is bad luck or a sign that the child has done something bad in their past life. As a result they are ostracized from society, impacting not only the child but also the whole family.
Despite the swim-a-thon event having passed, you can still donate and each amount is still matched. The change you can make is astounding!
For more information or to donate, please visit www.KidsActionForKids.org or email [email protected] with any questions or inquiries.