Your friends are fundraising. Don't miss out, opt in.

155 %
raised of £1,000 target
by 97 supporters
Verity Westgate avatar
Verity Westgate

Verity's page

Fundraising for Mind - The Mental Health Charity

155 %
raised of £1,000 target
by 97 supporters
  • Event: 2010 Great North Swim, 04 Sep 2010

Mind - The Mental Health Charity

We’re Mind, the mental health charity. We believe no one should have to face a mental health problem alone. We’re here for you. Today. Now. Whether you’re stressed, depressed or in crisis. We’ll listen, give support and advice, and fight your corner.

Charity Registration No. 219830


Update 29/09/10

I did survive the swim, but it was one of the most challenging things that I have ever done.  Having trained to swim a mile, havin gto do 2.25 miles was a bit like suddenly taking on a marathon rather than a10K, and the lateness of the date meant that it was far colder at Dorney Lake than it would have been at Lake Winderemere – the water was 15C and the air temperature 10C with a strong northerly wind which created quite a current. The Aqua Sphere “Long Swim”s are really aimed at the serious athlete, so I had to contend with swimming most of the course without any other swimmers in sight – most of them were getting out, just as I was about to embark on my third and final lap, by which time my hands, feet and face were completely numb.  I am very proud of the fact that I was able to persevere to the end, and whilst I finished 121st out of 130 swimmers, we think nearly 50 people did not complete the swim as it was so cold.  I am very pleased to have raised over £1200 for Mind, but would love to make it to £1500 (and beyond), in light of quite how tough the swim please do sponsor me if you haven't yet, or let other people know...

*EDIT* 03/10/2010*

The Great North Swim has been "postponed" due to a prevelance of green-blue algae! Unfortunately even if it is rescheduled to next weekend (unlikely) we won't be able to travel up to the Lakes again to do it.

HOWEVER, I had somewhat recklessly entered a swim just before finding out that news, at Dorney Lake (the Olym...pic rowing venue) on 26th September.

Recklessly I say, because this swim is an ironman distance swim of 2.25 miles (3.8k or 152 lengths of a 25m pool). So I've decided to do that in aid of Mind instea. I hope those that have sponsored me, don't mind tooo much (after all you'll get 125% more swimming for your money as well as 3 weeks more training) and that those who have yet to sponsor me will do as the new distance is over twice as far as I've ever swum in my life... (If you've already sponsored me please feel free to sponsor me more)

Having successfully completed last year's Great North Swim (a mile's swim in Lake Windermere), I have set myself the challenge of doing it all over again, and getting round the course faster than last year's 40 minutes and 57 seconds.  So, I have taken up front crawl (which I could only swim 2 lengths of in February!), put in many miles of training in over the last six months, and will be endeavouring to put my head in Lake Windermere this year - it was about 16C last year!  I am sure this is deserving of some £s!

I’m once again hoping to raise as much money as I can for Mind, who over the last year have done some fantastic work in raising the profile of mental health in the country, and in the government.  One of their current campaigns involves the promotion of mental health at work, which is something that I think is hugely important having had a period of time when I struggled on in work despite suffering from depression.  My other motivation behind this year’s swim is again to remember my very dear friend Emily, and it will be with pink painted toenails and the prospect of a cup of tea at the end in her memory that I take to the water on the 4th September, 4:30pm.  The money from Emily's funeral was split between Mind and Rethink, and as last year, I am hoping to add to the amount raised in 2006.

I've set a target of £1000 (I'm not sure I can bear to immerse my head in such chilly water for much less!), and every penny will go to them (please also giftaid your donation if you can...).

Mind have given some examples of how the money can be used:

· £8 provides a lifeline. It enables us to answer a call to the MindinfoLine from
someone in desperate need of support.
· £15 could help someone experiencing mental health problems to take part in a
group therapy session where they are encouraged to discuss their feelings
· £150 could help to establish a vital support group at one of our local Mind
associations assisting people with mental health problems in regaining
confidence and self-esteem
· £108 would help to keep MindinfoLine open for one hour, answering on average
the concerns of 14 people in need of support and information.
· £500 would help our legal line to be open for one day giving important information
about their rights and practical legal advice to people with mental health
· £1000 could help us support a local Mind association befriending scheme.
Trained workers make regular phone calls to isolated people who are at risk of
developing depression and other mental health related problems.

Mind are hoping to raise £40,000 through the Great North Swim this year, so it would be great if you can help me to help them meet this target!

Thank you very much for your support - I am sure it will help motivate me in my final weeks of training and in that somewhat chilly lake!


  • Last year...