Helen O’Horan Completes Chillswim to Raise Funds for Hampshire Medical Fund

Helen O’Horan, a dedicated member of the Vascular Access Team at HHFT, has successfully completed the Chillswim in the Lake District, raising an impressive £500 for the Hampshire Medical Fund. This achievement not only highlights her personal determination and resilience but also underscores the importance of the Hampshire Medical Fund in supporting healthcare teams with essential equipment.

The Chillswim is a gruelling endurance event that takes place in the scenic Lake District, requiring participants to swim the length of Coniston Water, a challenging 5.25-mile (8.24 km) freshwater lake. For Helen, this feat was particularly significant as she only learned to swim five years ago, overcoming a fear of water to embark on a journey towards better health and fitness. “I decided to get fit after experiencing some health issues,” Helen shared. “During COVID, I started swimming in open water with a friend who was a coach, and that’s when my journey really began.”

Despite her relatively recent introduction to swimming, Helen’s determination saw her through the rigorous training and preparation needed for the Chillswim. “I’ve never done anything like it before,” she admitted. Her training sessions, the longest of which were around 5.5 to 6 kilometres in the sea with the assistance of currents, provided a foundation for her endurance. However, the still waters of the lake presented a different kind of challenge, making her accomplishment all the more commendable.

The swim itself was no easy task. “I got to about 4 miles and was feeling really tired,” Helen recalled. “But the safety workers gave me a pep talk, and it helped me massively.” With their encouragement and her own steadfast spirit, Helen completed the swim in just over four hours, an impressive time for such a demanding event.

Helen’s motivation for undertaking this challenge was deeply personal and closely tied to her professional life. “I chose the Hampshire Medical Fund because they have provided equipment for my team in the hospital,” she explained. In 2020, the Fund supplied Helen’s Vascular Access Team with two PICC ultrasound machines, which have significantly improved their ability to visualise veins and perform their duties effectively. “It’s made things so much easier for our team,” Helen noted. “Now, with four of us in the team, two of us can go out with a machine each.”

The funds raised through Helen’s Chillswim will undoubtedly contribute to further enhancing the capabilities of healthcare teams supported by the Hampshire Medical Fund. Her story is a testament to the power of personal transformation and the impact of community support in the field of healthcare. Helen’s dedication and success serve as an inspiration to many, demonstrating that with determination and the right support, even the most daunting challenges can be overcome.

If you would like to support the Hampshire Medical Fund, create a fundraiser with JustGiving, or visit our “Become a Supporter” page.