You will receive a t-shirt (made by rescued women in India through Freeset!), swim cap, food (Chick-fil-A, Yola's Cafe, etc.) and a goodie bag at the event, not to mention being part of something awesome!
First, come to our Kickoff Party on March 16 from 4:30 to 6:30pm, PlayN Wisconsin (3919 Parmenter St, Middleton) to hear an IJM rep talk about IJM's work and how this organization is changing the world by rescuing slaves and bringing justice to the poor. We'll give you essential tools for fundraising, such as pledge sheets and instructions on setting up your own IJM fundraising page to show your friends and family. Kickoff is a blast, as plenty of time is set aside to hang out with friends on PlayN Wisconsin's trampolines and playsets! Parents also enjoy the chance to ask questions and hear more about IJM. Then, tell everyone what you're up to! Some donors choose to give a flat amount before the event, while others like to motivate swimmers with per-lap pledges (e.g. $1 per lap for a particular swimmer or for a team). Donations are given through our IJM campaign pages (visit our Sponsor Swimmers page) and go directly to IJM, a non-profit organization, so donations are tax-deductible.
Sure -- if you decide not to swim, please try to find a substitute swimmer! If you can't find a sub, we'll refund your registration, up to 7 days before the event.
No. Fundraising is totally at the discretion of each swimmer/family. But we're fundraising to end slavery... we do hope you'll at least ask a few people!
Donations may be made by credit card (online) or check. If you receive cash from a donor, please keep the cash and write an equivalent check to IJM. Checks may be mailed in (mark with swimmer's name and "Freedom Swim" on the memo line; mail to International Justice Mission, PO Box 96961, Washington, DC 20090-6961) or handed to us on event day.
No. We'll check you in by name when you arrive, but you do need to be registered in advance.
If you can't find 6 or more swimmers, we will do our best to help you form a team. 6 is the minimum to qualify for team prizes, to help us offset event costs. We reserve the right to move swimmers between teams as needed, although we'll do our best to keep you with your peeps! If you wind up swimming with a team of less than 6, that is still ok, and your efforts are just as important.
Absolutely! It takes about 70 volunteers on event day to make Freedom Swim happen. Parents will see a place in the registration to offer to help us out. Friends can contact us anytime about volunteering. We give a shirt to each volunteer, too!
Swimmers are allowed to use paddles, flotation, wetsuits, kickboards. No diving, no running, no flippers. Food is allowed in the lobby area of the pool but not on deck. At least one swimmer must remain in the lane during the entire 2 hours in order to qualify for team prizes. Have fun!
Sure, as long as it doesn't become too hard for swimmers and lap counters to move around -- just be considerate of others in this regard.
Hop out of the water but stay by your lane whenever you can. Of course bathroom breaks are necessary sometimes! Cold? There's free hot chocolate in the lobby for swimmers, or... just start swimming again!
No, as long as someone from the team is still swimming until the end of your wave.
Food is not allowed on the pool deck, so it needs to stay in the lobby or outside. Cups with lids are allowed on deck. Swimmers can take turns with teammates going to the lobby for a quick snack provided for them at 11:00 (First Wave), 1:15 (Second Wave), or 3:30 (Third Wave). After each wave, there will be a meal (provided by Yola's Cafe and Chick-fil-A) in the lobby for each swimmer.
Online donations and checks received before 4/13/19 at 9:00pm will be counted toward the prizes. Checks and online donations received from then until 5/30 will be part of the Freedom Swim campaign total but not counted toward team prizes.
Yes! Siblings ages 3-6 are invited to join our "Little Freedom Swimmers" team! Each will swim one lap, assisted by a parent/adult, before the main event begins. Little Freedom Swimmers can fundraise, but pay no registration fee (and therefore would need to purchase a t-shirt). One year's LFS team raised $915 for IJM!! Contact us if your child is interested in being a Little Freedom Swimmer (no registration required).