We’re challenging you to swim 1, 5 or 10 miles in 30 days. 

Whether you’re a novice or seasoned swimmer, Swim for Dementia is the challenge for you. It’s a great way to support people living with dementia while ticking off a big goal.

It’s completely free to sign up and if you raise £100 for Alzheimer’s Society, you’ll receive a medal in the post.

Join our Swim for Dementia Facebook group and get support from everyone else who is taking on the same challenge. 

How far will you swim?

You can pick your distance from 1, 5 or 10 miles. Or go freestyle and pick your own. Take part at your local pool, lido or brave the open water.

1 mile - 64 lengths of 25m pool
5 miles - 322 lengths of 25m pool
10 miles - 644 lengths of 25m pool
Freestyle - pick your own!

The rules

  • It's free to take part and no fundraising target. We'd encourage every participant to aim for £100 and earn their medal.
  • Track your distance using your smart watch or device or by simply counting your lengths. You can link your Strava app to your JustGiving fundraising page to keep your friends and family up to date.
  • You're responsible for tracking your own miles.
  • Make sure you follow the coronavirus rules and regulations for your area to keep you and your community safe. Find out more here for Northern IrelandScotlandWales and England.

What your fundraising will support

  • £300 means over 1,800 people can access Talking Point, our online forum. Here people can learn from each other experiences, share their frustrations and their knowledge of local services.
  • £95 provides a telephone-based Dementia Adviser for a full day. Providing essential support to those affected by dementi
  • £15 turns four ordinary citizens into superhero Dementia Friends! There is a stigma attached to living with dementia and Dementia Friends facilitates societal change, helping people understand the impact on people’s lives

Why you should join our swimming challenge

  • The health benefits – exercise can increase stamina, strength and aerobic fitness. It’s also a fun way to get fit
  • Burn calories – exercise can help you maintain a healthy weight and keep active
  • Take part when and where you want - this challenge is a great way to stay motivated and keep up your daily exercise. Take part in your local pool, lido or brave the open water.
  • Help us beat dementia – The money you raise from this challenge will help fund a range of important services to help people affected by dementia


What is Swim for Dementia

We’re challenging everyone to swim 1, 5 or 10 miles within 30 days.  You can track your miles each day using a smart watch or by counting your lengths. If you’d like to increase the distance and set a higher target, that’s completely up to you!

Are there any registration or participation fees?

No – Swim for Dementia is free to take part!

Is there a fundraising target?

You can set your own target, we suggest £100.

Everyone who raises £100 will be posted an Alzheimer's Society medal.

How do I track my miles and can I link my fitness app?

You can track your miles however you wish. Use your favourite app or simply count your lengths.

If you use Strava, you can link your account to your JustGiving page to track your activities and share your progress with your supporters . When viewing your page, scroll down to the Fitness Activity box and click Connect with Strava. See the full instructions  here.

Only connect once you're ready to start your challenge as all of your activities will upload to your page. Once setup you can change your settings by clicking Manage Strava Settings found in the same Fitness Activity box on your fundraising page. This will let you pick what information you share on your page.

If you don't use Strava, you'll find a button to Add manual data  in the Fitness Activity box, under the Connect with Strava button. You can manually add your activities to keep your supporters updated on your progress and track your total activity.

See JustGiving's help pages here if you're having a problem connecting.

How do I get my Swim for Dementia medal?

All UK residents who raise £100 or more on their JustGiving fundraising page will receive a special medal in the post to say thank you.

We'll send out one medal per fundraising page setup, if you would like additional medals please get in touch.

You don't need to do anything to claim your medal, we'll pop it in the post. We send out medals in the last week of each month, so your medal should arrive within 4-6 weeks of you hitting the £100 target. If it's been longer than 6 weeks and you haven't heard from us, please pop us an email so we can help to [email protected].

How do I fundraise?

Please set up a Just Giving page to fundraise. All income is transferred directly to us. You will be able to share your progress on Facebook and Twitter too.

We will also provide fundraising tips and support throughout your journey. We ask you to get any final donations over to us within a month of completing your challenge.  

Where can I get a sponsorship form?

You can download a sponsorship form here.

We can of course send more copies in the post if you need them - simply email us at [email protected] to request this.  

How will Alzheimer’s Society use the funds I have raised?

The money you raise will make a big difference to the lives of many affected by dementia. We fund essential support services for people living with dementia and their carers, as well as funding research to find a cure.

To find out more you can visit our website at www.alzheimers.org.uk.

Can I take cash donations?

You can pay offline donations into your fundraising page, you also have the option to collect sponsorship via our sponsorship form or by sending us a cheque. Please view the full list on how to send in your offline donations.

Can I meet other participants taking part?

Of course! Join our Facebook group to get chatting.

Prefer Strava? Join the Strava group here.

Need some training tips?

Download our 8 top swimming tips here.

There are lots of articles and tips on the Swim England website here. If you're looking to try something new with this challenge, it's important to seek advice first.


Can I get a t-shirt?

You can purchase an Alzheimer's Society t-shirt from our shop here.

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