ULTRASWIM for Abandoned Animals

by Hanna Sanchez

Swimming 900 laps is never easy but   I am willing to do it for CARA Welfare Philippines and all the abused animals under their care.  I want to help in away I can.  i am not rich so I thought of a fundraiser where people can donate for my dedication.  Swimming is the only sport I can think of that will leave battle marks on my body.

We started preparing last January when my friends Melly Ng, Irene Ong, Franz Anton and Arturo Virata helped me.  We talked about our promotional strategy and how we would talk to people about the event.  One said I could do 600 laps.  At that time, it was farfetched but when I think about it, it was comparably lower than 900.

(photo credit to PDI)

We started the journey by talking to CARA and telling them we want to organize an event to support their cause.  They cheerfully agreed and help us with the posters.  Melly did most of the promotional stuff, Doc Art strategize how to take care of my body, Franz made sure that my body is still intact after numerous hours by applying what he learned as a licensed physical therapist and Irene being a veteran in ultramathon knows what to do when my body breaks down.  We all did what we were good at for CARA.  They all love animals too which made it easier for them to donate their time to this endeavor.

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w/ CARA Welfare Phils. and Support crew (photo by Melly Ng)

I wasn’t really prepared about swimming the distance.  It has been maybe one or two months since my last proper training.  I just swam a week before the event to test the water as Melly puts it.  I know that I would finish the event just because I will not stop until I finish 900 laps.  I just did it by heart.

The day finally arrived; I didn’t work the day before the event.  I figured that I will just do my pending paper works on Sunday, the day after the event.  However, I cannot lift my arms and I was under the spell of the bed telling me to stay where I needed to be.

We started at 6:45am.  The first few kilometers were all smile because I do not feel pain anywhere.  It is just up until lunch break where my body gradually died and all I can do was sit there while my friends attended to me.

I was breaking down during the last few thousand kilometers.  My body aches in places where I didn’t know can even be susceptible to long distance swimming.  Good thing support from friends who swam with me kept me going until the end of the event.

My Teammates in Endure (photo by Irene Ong)


Team mate Sid and my friends pacing me in my last few kilometers (photo by Melly Ng)


Finally, I reached the last kick!  It was almost 11 hours of non-stop swim all for the benefit of CARA.

Last kick to my final lap
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22.5km done in 25m pool!

I did not hesitate to this vent without proper training for CARA Welfare Philippines.  They help abused animals get a home through care until the right family takes them.  They have given a lot of animals a second chance to live.  That is what amazes me.  I know the money that we were able to gather is in good hands.  We were able to double our target which is good news for them.  All their cats and dogs can be found near CSB.  Contact CARA in their facebook page to find out more about on how to donate.

You too can make a difference for abandoned animals!

CARA’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/CARAPhil?fref=ts




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