The sum of €8,000 was raised last Sunday at the 19th edition of the Thomas Smith Charity Swim in aid of the Malta Community Chest Fund. The amount collected – made up of €5,700 from swimmers’ family and friends – was topped up and rounded to €8,000 by Thomas Smith.

Steve Abela, son of the late Alfred, doing the somersault in memory of his father.Steve Abela, son of the late Alfred, doing the somersault in memory of his father.

Just over 200 swimmers of all ages braved the wind and cold winter sea in Sliema to raise funds for charitable causes. Fifty-two women and 154 men took part in this year’s swim.

In a brief address to the swimmers before they jumped into the sea, President Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca thanked everyone for their support, commending the Thomas Smith Group for organising the swim on an annual basis and thanking the company for contributing towards the final amount donated. The President presented medals to all the 206 participating swimmers after they completed the swim.

Eva Testa Bickle, who is three years old, was the youngest registered participant, following in her sister’s footsteps, who was the youngest swimmer in 2014. The youngest male swimmer was six-year-old Benjamin Alamango, while Wilfred Pirotta, 81 and Marlene Attard, 74 were the eldest.

Last year’s event was cancelled due to bad weather.  A sum of €5,000 was nonetheless presented to the Malta Community Chest Fund. The amount was reached through public donations and topped up by the group and its staff. Ever since its inception, the group has managed to collect just over €110,000.

Joe Gerada, together with Liana Cachia, the group’s HR and marketing manager and organiser of the charity swim, will be presenting the cheque to Ms Coleiro Preca at San Anton Palace at the end of this month.

Swimmers of all ages took part.Swimmers of all ages took part.

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