Cover Members of the Water for Wellbeing relay team with Olympian Siobhán Haughey (Photo: Six Sixty Studios)

Captained by Olympic swimmer Camille Cheng, an all-female swim relay group consisting of former and current Olympians as well as Tatler community member Antonia Li will take to the waters in a fundraising swim event on November 15

Splash Foundation, a Hong Kong-based non-profit that supports underprivileged communities in learning to swim, is holding a charity relay swim titled Water for Wellbeing on November 15—and a group of current and former Olympians and thought leaders in the community are set to take part.

The event, which consists of a 45km swim around Hong Kong Island, aims to highlight the importance of physical and mental well-being. A team consisting of Hong Kong Olympic swimmers Camille Cheng and Jamie Yeung, former team members Hannah Wilson and Karen Robertson, former US track and field athlete and business leader Claire Cormier Thielke, and athleisure label Autopilot co-founder Antonia Li will be taking part.

The group is the first all-women relay team to attempt a swim of this length in Hong Kong. They aim to raise HK$888,000, which will go towards Splash Foundation’s efforts in teaching those from low-income families how to swim.

“I did some interesting and challenging swims to prepare for our relay,” Li, who turned to open water swimming after sustaining an injury and has been preparing for the relay through weekly swims since September with instructors from Pacific Coast Aquatics, tells Tatler. “I swam in choppy conditions and in the dark, as we will be swimming at 3:15am on November 15.”

“Like many people in Hong Kong, I’ve had to work hard to manage my own mental health over the past few years, [and] having the opportunity to be in water has been so vital in that process,” says Cheng in a press statement. “By doing this swim, I want to raise awareness of how important swimming is—or could be—to our general well-being.”    

Splash Foundation was established with the goal of helping more people in Hong Kong feel at ease in the water. According to a 2021 study, almost half of Hong Kong’s residents are unable to swim. To date, the non-profit has taught over 4,000 people in the city how to swim.

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