- Phenomenal turnout at Salthill as NUI Galway ‘Coldvember’ returns for its’ fourth year
- Over €5000 raised so far with the total growing by the day
Donations have been pouring in for the NUI Galway Coldvember team who are swimming at sunrise in Blackrock Pier every day this November.
Coldvember, the annual student-led event which sees NUI Galway students swim in the freezing cold waters of Salthill at dawn, has been taking place this month to raise money and awareness for the Galway Rape Crises Centre.
The Galway Rape Crises Centre are a local organisation that work to provide a professional, caring and confidential counselling and support service for people affected by sexual abuse and sexual violence.
With over 39% of GRCC clients in 2020 being under the age of 25, and 9% being male, the Coldvember organisers Charlie, John, Dan, Eoin and John were “honoured” to get an opportunity to raise money for the GRCC as part of Coldvember.
The team have used their social media platform to spread awareness and knowledge around the issue of sexual violence and regularly share information from the Galway Rape Crises Centre with their near 3,000 followers on Instagram.
Speaking to SIN, co-organiser Charlie Clarke explained the multiple benefits of taking part in Coldvember this year.
“It’s just such a buzz. The whole idea of Coldvember is getting everybody down to promote positive mental health. The water is so lovely and it starts your day off right, and there is such a positive energy down here.”
Niamh Connor, a final year student at NUI Galway, has taken part in Coldvember almost every day so far and shared some of her favourite parts of the event with SIN.
“It’s such an exhilarating experience and it’s really got me motivated to get up early and tackle some of the assignments I have been dreading. I would honestly do this every day of my life if I could, and the team are so welcoming. It’s amazing how many friendly people you meet as well. At that time of the morning, you’d think that people would want to keep to themselves but at Coldvember everyone just bounces off each other’s vibes. It’s such a positive place.”
Countless students and members of the local area take part in the daily event despite the cold conditions, with Coldvember merchandise even becoming available for the first time this year due to the event’s popular demand.
Local businesses have also showed their support for the Coldvember event, with Álainn Galway offering a 10% discount to those who mention they are taking part in Coldvember. They will also be running their own fundraiser for Coldvember on November 30th.
Over €15,000 euro was raised by last year’s Coldvember team, and this year’s group are hoping to match, if not surpass, this total.
Clarke told SIN that “So far from donations purely we have raised about €3,500 and then from our hat sales we have raised around €2,000. On day one, someone took a screenshot of our donation page and said that we had raised over €1,000 already and we were just dancing around the place. It was so lovely to see.”
Clarke concluded that “we are aiming for €20,000,” and the team get closer to this goal every day as support for Coldvember extends across the country with many taking part in the event on other beaches nationwide.
Donations can be made at https://www.idonate.ie/fundraiser/11419817_coldvember-nuig-s-page.html
The fundraising link will not close until December 31st 2021 and the team are encouraging everybody to get involved in the event and donate.