Honu Para Swimming English Channel Crossing 2014

As most of you already know, in 2006 I started the Honu Para Swim Team for swimmers with a disability. For the past 8 years I have been coaching on a volunteer basis. This has been financially and personally very challenging but at the same time has been very rewarding. I am proud of the results achieved by my swimmers with a disability and honored to be able to be part of a swimmer’s life – a swimmer who faces a challenge every day, but who never gives up and never stops dreaming.

We are looking for your support and sponsorship of an event that will make history. Seven swimmers with a disability will cross the English Channel June 22–‐30, 2014. Swimming the English Channel is the Mount Everest of open water swimming–‐ the biggest open water challenge in the World.

Our team of international swimmers is comprised of dedicated, hard working achievers each of whom has had an outstanding swimming career, there are eleven Paralympic medals amongst them. Each of our swimmers shares a dream – a dream they wish to share with other Para swimmers.

The aim of the 2014 “Keep the Dream Afloat” relay is to start a non–‐profit organization for Swimmers with a disability to support low income athletes with a disability to join the sport of swimming –‐ to improve their health and lifestyle. The high profile event is also designed to create awareness of the challenges a person with disability faces. “Keep the Dream Afloat ” relay will be the start of an annual event.

Please take a moment to visit our campaign site and watch our team video @Pursu.it Under “Keep the Dream Afloat”. Substantial donations will receive a spot (for a name or logo) on our relay banner that will cross the channel with us.

We are very happy to have the full support from VRS, Vancouver Resource Society, if you need a charitable tax receipt please donate @ VRS / Fundraising / Donate today / “Keep the Dream Afloat” English Channel.

We thank you in advance for consideration of this request.

Thank you very much for your time and support,
Marianne Alvarez and The 2014 Honu Para Swim Relay team members

MEET THE TEAM

Amber Thomas-Canada : Lost her sight in 2003

  • Paralympic Games/Beijing/2008
  • Bronze and Gold/Paralympic Games/London/2012

Scott Patterson- Canada : Double Leg Amputee

  • finalist/Paralympics/Wheel Chair track/ Soel/1998
  • Bronze/Paralympics/Giant slalom/Salt Lake City/2002
  • Paralympics/ski/Torino/2006
  • Finalist/Paralympics/swimming/London/2012

Guillermo Marro-Argentina : Born with mobility dysfunction

  • Bronze/Paralympics/Sidney/2000
  • Silver/Paralympics/Athens/2004
  • Bronze/Paralympics/Beijing/2008
  • Finalist/Paralympics/London/2012
  • flag bearer/Argentina/ London/ 2012
  • 3 time world record holder
  • 4 time Para-Pan American champion

Pedro Rangel Haro-Mexico : Double leg amputee

  • bronze/Paralympics/Athens/2004
  • Gold/World Championship/ South Africa/2006
  • Gold/Paralympics/Beijing/2008
  • Bronze/Paralympics/ London/2012

Moises Fuentes- Colombia : Previously paraplegic, presently paraplegic and
amputated above right knee

  • Bronze/Paralympics/Beijing/2008
  • Silver/Paralympics/London/2012
  • Gold/World Championship/Canada/2013
  • Colombia’s first Paralympic medal

Enrique Guerrero-Mexico : Amputated leg below right knee

  • Youth Para-Pan American Games/ Colombia/2009

Isaac Aquino Zapata-Mexico: Born with congenital malformation of the left hand
(Amber’s guide)

  • Mexican open water swimmer, has crossed the open water challenge from Cancun to Isla
  • Mujeres twice
  • Gold in Mexican National Paralympics
  • Gold in Youth Para Pan-American Games/Colombia/2009
  • Started a foundation in Mexico for disabled athletes

Congratulations Dale Robinson!

Congratulations Dale Robinson on your Excellence in Coaching Award from Masters Swim Canada!

Dale Robinson is the recipient of the Excellence in Coaching Award for 2014.

Dale is an NCCP-certified swim coach, with over 15 years of coaching experience in Ontario and BC. He has been coaching masters swimming in BC for over a decade.

Dale’s swim clubs are long lasting. This speaks to his coaching ability. He coached the UBC Masters for eight years and has been coaching and operating his own successful club, Infinity Swimming, for the last four years. Dale is also the head coach of the Masters program at the Vancouver Pacific Swim Club.

Dale has a special knack for enriching the swimming experience in a hard-working, fun-filled kind of way. For the last three years, Dale has organized a weeklong Masters swim camp in Maui involving over 30 swimmers. This undertaking has gone far beyond the duties of a coach. It included all aspects of the camp from planning, recruiting coaches, finding Maui pool time (not as easy as one might think), organizing an end of session gathering and most importantly, getting the swimmers to smile each morning at 6 a.m. and each evening at 6 p.m. as they swim 3 to 5 km per session.

Dale has coached both triathletes and competitive swimmers, successfully bringing two into one venue and enriching the experience of each. On a daily basis, Dale presents a positive coaching image and demonstrates concern for the all-round development of every swimmer. A skilled coach, he is excited by every one of his swimmers, whether a novice, former Olympian or current World Record holder and he is able to motivate them all!

Dale is enthusiastic about the achievements of all his swimmers. They regularly participate in masters swim meets at the regional, provincial and national levels. He is often one of the swimmers amongst them.

Extracted from Celebrating Masters 2014, Masters Swim Canada.


Long Course Time Trial in preparation for the World Championship in Montreal

  • Sunday, June 22nd, at the Commonwealth Pool in Victoria.
  • Warm-up: approximately 1:30 pm (will start as soon as the heats of the age group AA Championships are over).
  • Cost: $10 – maximum 3 events (free for Vic Masters swimmers).
  • Records will not count as the meet will not be sanctioned.
  • For more information, see the attachment (event list).
  • If interested, please email Danielle Brault (daniellebrault@hotmail.com) as soon as possible so we get an idea of the number of lanes we need to book.