A SMALL daily dip in the ocean has raised a substantial amount of money for young carers.

Swimmers in Dorset and beyond braved chilly waters to raise money and support for Bournemouth-based charity MYTIME in a challenge set by corporate partnerships executive Tim Sills.

MYTIME Young Carers charity supports children and young people caring for family members whilst also raising awareness of young carers and their needs.

In previous years MYTIME has run a Hair2Care campaign, a single day event that saw supporters of the charity do something different to their hair to show their backing for young carers.

This year the challenge set by the charity was to ‘brave the wave’ by taking a dip in the sea once a day throughout January.

A year in the making, the initiative has proved a roaring success with the target goal of £10,000 well and truly exceeded, with more than £12,000 raised at the time of writing.

Tim said: “It was about a year ago and we were planning the year ahead.

“Looking at January, it is always quite a quiet month in fundraising terms because people don't necessarily want to go out and do a marathon or a long run, things like that.

“So you have to be a bit more creative with the challenge you come up with.

“So, with the location that we're in, I thought that getting in the sea every day might be something that people could do and get on board with.

“It does have lots of benefits to it, as hard as it is every day to get yourself in there.

“It was just a way of creating some real interest in what is normally a quiet month.

“It's proved a huge success.”

A group swim down Sandbanks at sunrise marked the final day of the challenge on Wednesday, January 31.

Tim said: “Between 11 of us who are doing it we've raised over £12,000, which is a hell of a whack.” 

“It will mean, for example, that we can take 240 young carers on a making memories day to give them respite from their responsibilities of looking after a loved one at home.

“If we want to spend it differently, then it would get us into six or seven schools to be able to give them the level up programme that we deliver and help them support young carers and identify them in their schools.

“It's a great chunk of money that will go a long way for us to be able to support and relieve the everyday stresses that young carers have.”

Donations can be made to the fundraiser via this link. To find out more about MYTIME Young Carers, visit https://www.mytimeyoungcarers.org/.