venerdì 2 settembre 2011

6th edition - I swim for Gianca

Camogli, ( Genoa ) August 6th 2011

The fairy tale I’m going to tell you is set in the beautiful Gulf of Tigullio where, on the 6th of August, we held the sixth edition of “I swim for Giancarlo.” We swam for over ten kilometers in order to raise funds for research and for people who suffered from spinal injuries when playing rugby and other sports in Italy.

From Portofino to Camogli, passing through the beautiful waters of the Marine Protected Area. Ten thousand meters with amateurs and champions of both the past and today, with testimonials as exceptional as Giancarlo Volpato, Gianca for all of us, a reference point for willpower and desire to live, and founder of the event.

This 2011 edition will be remembered for the important milestone of doubling the number of participants since the first one, and in terms of fundraising. We have achieved 70,000 Euros, which will allow us to continue supporting current projects and scientific research that is approaching ever successful results. Another accomplishment was to donate a Fiat Doblò van, equipped to carry disabled people, to another great athlete: Cosimo Alessandro, also a victim of a sports accident like Giancarlo. Cosimo has founded the association “Friends of Cosimo”, which strives to raise awareness and disseminate safety-related issues in the world of rugby.

From left: G. Di Venanzo, J. Kirwan. T. Gelisio, G. Cacciamano, V. Abete

This edition will also be remembered for the extraordinary participation of the Japanese national rugby team, led by coach John Kirwan, who is our main supporter. With his help, in October I will live another magic experience: I’m about to travel to New Zealand, where I will swim across the Cook Strait, but this is an another story that I will tell you later on.

I began writing by calling this story a fairy tale, because once again I was lucky to share a magical moment with wonderful people, who taught me that nothing is impossible. This is a world where sport is a synonym of solidarity, where brave people live their lives helping others, working every day to overcome the suffering and exclusion and building an inclusive society, where disability is not a limit and integration is by default.

Salvatore Cimmino

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