Homeless charity Crisis has brought back its annual Icebreaker event this winter.
This season the charity hosts three of the events in Brockwell, Tooting and Parliament Hill.
The Icebreaker is a fundraising event that helps to raise money for Crisis in the coldest months.
The fundraiser includes an icy plunge or swim on your own or in the relay race, where you feel the freeze so that Crisis can bring warmth to those facing homelessness this winter.
Becky King, community and events fundraising team manager for Crisis, believes the Icebreaker really hammers it home that there are lots of people who have to brave these conditions on the streets throughout winter.
She said: “For a brief moment you may experience some of the discomfort that someone else feels when they are out living in terrible conditions with no roof over their head.
“But we then get to have a warm shower and new dry clothes, and then go home to our houses; it really does hammer it home to people.”
This year is the 10 year anniversary of the event and like all other years participants are encouraged to wear fancy dress to help draw attention and raise money for the charity.
The event requires a £25 registration fee which will be put towards reserving a place for someone at the Crisis Christmas centre.
The fee to take part will provide a homeless person with a place to stay at Christmas and other essential services.
King said: “It will provide someone with access to our services this Christmas such as a place to stay and the companionship of other people and volunteers who help provide services and entertainment.
“It will also go towards providing food and essentials, health and well-being programmes and advice on housing and benefits so these people can go on to access that support.”
The first Icebreaker was held in Brockwell lido this month and proved a success as many swimmers came along to complete the icy challenge, including broadcaster Ayo Akinwolere.
The next icebreaker will be at Tooting Lido on 15 January, followed by Parliament Hill lido on 22 January.
The charity is also offering a DIY icebreaker for those who aren’t comfortable participating in person.
To participate remotely the charity asks for a £10 registration fee and Crisis will then send you a swimming cap to wear, fundraising tips and more.
To participate DIY style the charity offers ideas such as committing to a month of cold showers or getting your household together for a cold water fight.
This year the charity celebrates their 50th anniversary of Crisis at Christmas.
The charity acknowledges its successes in helping the homeless, but says that it doesn’t intend to be delivering their Christmas services in another 50 years as ending homelessness is within their reach.
Until then they will continue to help people off of the streets and into a better life and ask the public’s help in doing so.
You can sign up to participate in the Icebreakers or the DIY version at https://www.crisis.org.uk/get-involved/fundraise/crisis-icebreaker/.
Photo credit: Crisis