Splashathon raises over £18k for Ipswich based children’s charity

Mums, babies and toddlers have raised more than �18,000 from Splashathon events. Picture: GREGG BROW

Mums, babies and toddlers have raised more than �18,000 from Splashathon events. Picture: GREGG BROWN

Families with babies and toddlers took part in special fundraising classes throughout June and July to raise money for Ipswich based children’s charity, Tommy’s.

The series of Splashathon events hosted by Water Babies saw hundreds of local babies aged 12 weeks to four years saving other babies’ lives by swimming a width in fancy dress.

The £18,669 raised for Tommy’s will go towards vital research into miscarriage, stillbirth and premature birth, helping up to 60,000 families nationally.

Rebecca Succamore of Water Babies Suffolk said: “Water Babies has been a proud partner of the Tommy’s Splashathon since 2006 and we are over the moon to have raised so much this year, because this is helping to meet our national fundraising target of £1 million by the end of the summer.

“The enthusiasm and passion shown by all our little splashers and their families has been overwhelming and we’d like to say a really big thank you to all those who took part and also those who donated. Tommy’s is obviously a charity close to many parents’ hearts.”

Jane Brewin, CEO at Tommy’s, said: “We are overwhelmed by the number of children who got dressed up and took part in the campaign this year and by the generosity of those who have supported by donating to the cause.

“It really will make a difference and help us to help more families achieve their dream of having a healthy, happy baby.”

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Tommy’s surveyed 500 new mothers across the UK ahead of the 2017 Splashathon.

Around 41 per cent of new mothers take their child(ren) to dedicated swimming classes to aid with their child’s physical and social development, along with their own mental health.

The findings also revealed that 59 per cent of women experience feelings of loneliness on a daily basis during the first three years of motherhood, whilst 38 per cent are worried about developing mental health issues such as depression.

Although three quarters (79 per cent) of new mothers said they received post-natal support from family members, over a quarter (27 per cent) said that social physical activity, such as swimming or baby yoga, gave them the most support in terms of improving their own mental wellbeing (65 per cent), and reducing feelings of isolation, depression and loneliness (74 per cent)

Whilst soft play and play groups remain the top mother and baby pastime (an average 66 per cent of mothers take their child to one or the other on a regular basis), baby swimming classes are fast becoming an important activity for new mothers and 33 per cent of new mothers said they feel more supported after taking part in such activities.

Paul Thompson, co-founder of Water Babies, the world’s leading baby and toddler swim school, said, “Swimming not only teaches vital life skills in the water, but it can also provide a vital sense of community for new mums.

“The Splashathon campaign is a perfect chance for us, and the parents who attend, to support women and families who may have had difficult and devastating experiences in pregnancy or childbirth. Every pound raised will help to save babies’ lives.”

To donate to the Tommy’s Splashathon, please visit the Just Giving page.