Both Mama Mary & Papa Kevin often have to pinch themselves as they are totally amazed at the wonderful friends we have here in the UK & Ireland who give their time selflessly to raise money for children at The Good Life Orphanage some 4,600 miles away. Two people who slot very easily into the category are Aidan Tiernan and Mike Watson, dear friends who have supported our project over the years and in 2013 decided to compete in the Great Manchester Swim whilst raising funds for the orphanage. Mike completed this difficult feat in 2012 raising over £850 and Aidan joined him this year, we actually referred to Mike as Aidan’s own Mr Miyagi, together they are a very formidable team giving each other support and advice when needed.
It is easy to forget on a sunny July day just how much effort, determination and dedication went into preparing for the one mile swim in the open waters a Salford Quays, during the cold wet winter months both Aidan & Mike regularly attended practise often in near arctic conditions, one day in particular the water was just hovering a 7*C, it was so cold! Then five times each week they went to the local baths in Bury to ensure they were in tip top condition for the big day. Over 3,000 swimmers completed the route today with Aidan & Mike being in the first group to start.
The only problem today was the heat, it was over 22*C in the water and with their wetsuits on, it was a mountain to climb for sure. All the swimmers were greeted warmly by the spectators and with the Tiernan Clan making the trip from “Down South”, Aidan & Mike were subjected to shouts of “Come on, not far to go now” all the way along the 1 mile route. Lyn, Mike’s wife, was the official photographer following them along the route and was a little quieter!
Coming close to the finish line, we spectators were feeling the heat but Aidan & Mike were just unstoppable in the water, it was difficult to see them in the sea of red caps but we managed to pick them out and gave a final flurry of verbal support, we all felt very proud of their achievement.
With both Aidan & Mike raising nearly £2,000 for The Good Life Orphanage, we feel very privileged that firstly they chose our project and secondly very thankful to each & everyone who made donations, 100% of the donations go directly to the project and will be spent on the building of our new Transition House which is the next step in our development of the Good Life Orphanage. This house will accommodate 20 of our older children who will learn to cook, clean and look after themselves as they prepare for life outside the security of the orphanage walls.