Paddle Across the Bay, Australia’s largest ever stand-up paddle boarding event, will take place Saturday March 2, 2019 and registrations are now open.
The fundraising event involves participants raising money in the lead up to completion of a 10-kilometre course across Port Phillip Bay on a stand-up paddle board, with funds raised going to Cancer Council Victoria.
The course will take participants anywhere between one and a half to two hours to complete, depending on fitness level and experience, but experience is not necessary to take part. Paddle Across the Bay began in 2016 and participants have raised over $100,000 in that time, with most of the fundraising happening before the event day.
Cancer Council Victoria Head of Community Engagement, Lyrian Fleming-Parsley, said funds raised by participants will go towards vital cancer research, prevention programs and support services.
“Events like this rely on the time, commitment and support of those participants who so generously get involved and raise funds. Paddle Across the Bay is a great event to experience with family, friends or colleagues – beginners are welcome! We couldn’t do the work we do without the generosity of the Victorian community – support services such as our 13 11 20 Information and Support Line are 100% donor funded.”
Ms Fleming-Parsley said taking part in Paddle Across the Bay also encourages participants to train in the lead up and to get active – thus reducing their risk of cancer.
“There are lots of reasons to sign up to this event; there are free paddle board classes going in the lead up, boards can be made available for use on the event day and as with any physical activity, you reduce your risk of many types of cancer. All of these benefits – as well as doing good!”
Rachel Clements, who will participate in her third Paddle Across the Bay in February, began her involvement after the death of her husband to cancer.
“Paddle boarding has become one of my happy places along my grief journey. I paddle in honour of my late husband Paul and to prove to myself I can do hard things. He did cancer, so I sure as hell can paddle!
“Coming back again this year it’s about our children Lily and Jack, showing them how we can, through our experience, make a difference and choose a healthy and happy life by fully embracing the simple things and surrounding ourselves with supportive community.”
Rachel also explained how she got her friends involved, and how getting together has now become a social event. “We have established a great group of keen paddlers who love to get out together when we can. Nothing better than an early morning paddle, chat and beach coffee to finish!”
For more information about the event visit www.paddleacrossthebay.com.au