Dive in to help tackle cancer

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A CHARITY is making waves thanks to its water-based fundraising event.

Swimathon 2012 is raising funds for Marie Curie Cancer Care and one of the venues for the challenge is Peterlee Leisure Centre.

The Swimathon Weekend hits 645 pools across the UK and Anna Kirk, the community fundraiser for Marie Curie Cancer Care, wants people in Peterlee to sign up.

One group already registered is the East Durham Belles - a group of women from Peterlee.

Its leader is Steph Masterman, who said: “Twenty ladies from the group have registered for their first swimming challenge, the Team Belles 5k Swimathon Challenge. 

“Some are experienced swimmers, but most are new to the sport, with some only recently learning to swim.

“We chose to sign up for Swimathon because cancer has touched many of our ladies’ lives, whether directly or indirectly. We are aiming to complete the challenge within two hours and hope to raise £500.”

Anna said: “Swimming is a great way for people to get fit for the summer and funds raised for Marie Curie Cancer Care will provide free care and support to terminally ill people and their families.”

Those taking part can choose from the 5k, 2.5k or Team 5k challenges.

Swimathon, staged from Friday to Sunday, is also linked to the BBC Big Splash and Sport Relief and anyone opting to back those causes can do it individually or as part of a team.

Funds raised for Marie Curie Cancer Care will help support nurses who provide free care to people with terminal cancer and other terminal illnesses, in the place of their choice.

The charity expects to care for over 31,000 terminally ill patients in the community and in its hospices this year.

Entries are open until the end of today and more details are available from www.swimathon.org