Woman who forged friendship through sea swimming take a dip a day during December to help others
Come hail, rain or shine, two women have been stripping down their cosies to join in a daily outdoor swim to raise funds to help others.
Sam Mason and Georgina Fuller made friends through their hometown Seaham Seaside Swimmers group are entering the last few days of their Dip a Day December challenge.
It has seen outdoor swimmers across the UK take a swim in the lead up to the New Year, with the pair deciding to raise funds for the Waddington Street Centre in Durham, where Sam works as a housing co-ordinator.
It will use the cash to support its work to help those in need of housing, mental health support and training schemes.
In addition to heading into the sea at Seaham, Seaburn and Seaton Carew, they have swam in lakes and rivers around the region.
Sam, 45, has been supported by her husband Paul, 45, daughters Kate, 22, and Lily, nine, and her work mates, with her youngest baking post-swim treats for mum and Georgina.
She said: “I’ve absolutely loved it.
"We tended to swim most days anyway in the build up to this, but it's definitely got colder leading up to the challenge and there can be a cold wind too, but it’s worth it.
"We’ve been doing it around family and work and we’ve had some brilliant support, which is great.”
Georgina, 47, a director of Sonach Marine Services, has been backed by her husband and children William, 10, and Charley, six.
She has taken up sea swimming again following a move back to Seaham in March, following in the footsteps of family members including dad Fred Philip, who died in 1999 aged 66, and those who were part of the Seaham Harbour Swimming Club.
She said: “I think by the 8th I was finding it very difficult to get in but it’s something I wanted to do and I’m always looking forward to it.”
Georgina, who lost her mum Pamela Philip, 86, a former midwife who worked at the maternity hospital in Little Thorpe, in May, added rediscovering cold water swimming has been a help to her mental health.
The women are sharing their experience through the Facebook page Sam Mason and Georgina Fuller, December Swim Challenge.