On and around June 24th, thousands of Speedo swimmers, including 14-time Olympic champion, Michael Phelps, have helped combat the spread of malaria in Africa by teaming up to raise an astonishing 193,647USD as part of World Swim Against Malaria.
Phelps and fellow Olympic Gold medallist Rebecca Adlington were among the 9,917 athletes, staff and friends of the worldâ€™s leading swimwear brand who took to the pool to raise money to purchase vital bed nets offering defence against malaria-carrying mosquitoes, ensuring that 76,322 children will be protected from what remains one of the worldâ€™s most deadly diseases.
As well as raising much needed funds for World Swim Against Malaria, the efforts of Speedo swimmers also amounted to a total distance of over 40,074km – the equivalent total distance of a round the world swim.
Speedoâ€™s introduction of an innovative donation system which allowed sponsors to claim swimwear items for every 5USD donated proved popular as thousands of swimmers took their pick from the stylish selection of designs on offer. The menâ€™s Marine 24â€ť Aquashort proved particularly popular, with many sporting their new swimwear as they took to the pool. For those who have not yet registered their donations, the swimwear offer remains open!
Although curable, malaria remains one of the worldâ€™s deadliest diseases, killing up to three million people each year. 90% of these cases are in Africa, with 70% of victims children under five years old. Thatâ€™s the equivalent of one child dying every 30 seconds – or seven jumbo jets filled with children dying every day.
In order to combat the disease, the Against Malaria Foundation uses 100% of proceeds from World Swim Against Malaria to purchase bed nets which provide a cheap and highly effective protection against the spread of malaria.
Speedo Internationalâ€™s President, David Robinson said: â€śWe are delighted that our athletes, employees and customers supported world swim against malaria, raising over 193,000USD and swimming around the world in the process! Our donation of free swimwear helped everyone look good and enjoy the experience. As always it was great to join other passionate swimmers using the positive power of swimming for such a worthy cause.â€ť
Rob Mather of the Against Malaria Foundation said: â€śWe are extremely grateful for the efforts, commitment and enthusiasm of everybody at Speedo, who have all provided invaluable support to the Against Malaria Foundation. We have now raised more than 5.7millionUSD, 100% of which has bought more than 1.3 million nets protecting more than 2.5 million people, mainly children. World Swim Against Malaria exists until malaria doesnâ€™t. If you havenâ€™t swum yet, please do.â€ť
To find out more information about World Swim Against Malaria and how to get involved visit the website: www.worldswimagainstmalaria.com/speedo.