Water Rats to Swim for the Philippines

Will Raise Money for Save the Children’s Relief Efforts

This time last year the Water Rats had no place to practice and no place to host swim meets. Our Family Y was closed while electricians, mechanics and technicians worked feverishly to repair the damage caused by Superstorm Sandy. We didn’t know if the building would ever reopen.

But the property damage, inconvenience and uncertainty that we experienced in 2012 pales in comparison to the death, destruction and despair caused by Super Typhoon Haiyan, a tropical cyclone that was 300 miles wide (the distance from Boston to Philadelphia) when it struck the Philippines. According to Philippine authorities, more than 11 million people have been affected by the typhoon, which Filipinos call Yolanda. It destroyed half a million homes and damaged hundreds of schools, hospitals and clinics.

This Thanksgiving we want to do more than feel fortunate; we want to help the millions of children who are at risk in the Philippines. That is why the Family Y will spend November 27 (the day before Thanksgiving) raising money for Save the Children’s relief efforts.

The Water Rats will “Swim for the Philippines” during the afternoon of November 27. The exact times and details will be announced on Monday. We will provide you with a PDF explanation and contributor sheet to record donations. We want swimmers to contact friends and family in Connecticut and out of state. Contributor sheets may be turned in during Swim for the Philippines or at practice over the Thanksgiving weekend. But all contributor sheets and checks are due no later than practice on Monday, December 2, 2013. The next day we will deliver the money to Westport-based Save the Children.

This will be the third time in eight years that the Water Rats have raised money for Save the Children. In 2005 the team held a swim for Asian Tsunami relief. In 2010 the Water Rats and Staples Swimming held a swim for Haiti. Every member of Water Rat Swim Team participated in those earlier events. We hope this year will be no different.