The 2023 running of Canada’s largest charity Polar Bear Dip will provide clean water to communities in Ethiopia and Zambia.
OAKVILLE, ON, Dec. 23, 2022 /CNW/ – Call them bold and brazen if you’d like, but every New Year’s Day, hundreds of people jump into Lake Ontario’s icy-cold water for one purpose – to raise money in support of fresh water projects in developing countries around the world. This year marks the 38th year that Courage Polar Bear Dip for World Vision has taken place, raising a total of over $2 million to date.
Dressed in just about anything from bathing suits, baby New Year costumes and Santa outfits, these dippers sacrifice their warmth each year to help others.
Todd and Trent Courage, founders of the annual Courage Polar Bear Dip for World Vision, visited Rwanda in the fall of 2009 and saw firsthand the impact of the funds raised by the event.
“Seeing how things are in Rwanda with my own eyes was a life-changing experience,” says Todd Courage. “In North America, it’s so easy to access fresh water that we take it for granted—a mere turn of a tap or twist of a cap—but in countries like Ethiopia or Zambia, accessing clean water is all about survival.”
“We’re so grateful for the Courage family and excited for a return to an in-person annual Polar Bear Dip,” says Michael Messenger, President and CEO of World Vision Canada. “By providing clean water to children and their communities we can provide them with health and safety. This is especially true for girls, who often put their safety and schooling at risk because they have to carry water. A source clean water closer to home can give them the freedom to go to school. That shows the impact of the funds raised through the Polar Bear Dip.”
Funds raised at the 38th annual Courage Polar Bear Dip will help provide a dependable source of clean water for World Vision’s WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) projects in Ethiopia and Zambia. This can include building safe water points (wells or reservoirs) and partnering with local utility companies to provide piped water directly to households. Clean, safe drinking water also allows children to spend time in school rather than trekking to distant water sources.
COURAGE POLAR BEAR DIP FAST FACTS
- After two years of virtual dips, The Courage Polar Bear Dip is back at Coronation Park in Oakville
- The Courage Polar Bear Dip takes place on January 1
- On-site registration begins at 12:30 p.m.
- Costume Contest at 1 p.m.; Dip at 2 p.m.
- The Courage Polar Bear Dip is Canada’s largest Polar Bear Dip for Charity
- This year’s event is expected to raise $100,000
- Since 1995, The Courage Polar Bear Dip has raised over $2 million for World Vision fresh water projects around the world
SOURCE World Vision Canada