NSRI urges the public to join the Winter Solstice plunge

The Winter Solstice plunge is an annual event. Picture: NSRI

The Winter Solstice plunge is an annual event. Picture: NSRI

Published May 23, 2024


The National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) invites the public to brave the cold and join in the winter solstice plunge this year to raise essential funds.

The winter solstice, also called the hibernal solstice, occurs when either of the Earth's poles reaches its maximum tilt away from the sun. This happens twice yearly, once in each hemisphere.

The winter solstice is the longest night and shortest day of the year in terms of daylight and takes place on June 20.

NSRI spokesperson, Craig Lambinon has called on the public to join in on the annual tradition.

NSRI volunteers are on duty year-round, ready to dive into action at a moment's notice — even on the coldest day of the year. As the winter solstice approaches, marking the longest night of the year on June 20, the NSRI encourages you to embrace the chill and celebrate the return of longer days with an invigorating plunge.

“Join thousands across the Southern Hemisphere in this tradition by taking a plunge in the sea, a tidal pool, a swimming pool, your local dam, or even by participating in an ice bucket challenge. Not only is this a test of endurance and bravery, but it may also offer health benefits, such as boosting your immune system, improving circulation, and reducing stress,” Lambinon said.

He said the NSRI has a proud legacy of cold-water swims with volunteers from Station 23 in Wilderness. He said last year, Jané Botha from Wilderness raised R47,500 in cold-water swims, and a team of NSRI volunteers from various rescue bases who swam the Robben Island Crossing in 2023 raised more than R40,000.

Lambinon also challenged the public.

“This year, we challenge you to organise a winter solstice plunge on or around June 20 or 21. No matter how small, every contribution helps the NSRI continue to teach water safety, survival swimming, conduct rescue operations, and save lives,” he said.

By getting involved you can set a date, visit the GivenGain, search for the NSRI charity page and select ‘start fundraising’, and then spread the word among family and friends.

For more information on organising your Solstice Plunge and the tax breaks you’ll get from your donation, visit the NSRI’s Community Fundraising page or contact Renee at 021 434 4011 or [email protected].