CHOC cows dip in

‘Moomen’ will brave chilly waters to raise funds, awareness

TAKING THE PLUNGE:The CHOC Cows will brave chilly waters and swim from Robben Island to Big Bay beach in Bloubergstrand Picture: SUPPLIED

The East London Childhood Cancer Foundation South Africa (CHOC) Cows will brave the chilly Atlantic Ocean from March 24 to 27 in a bid to raise awareness and funds for the organisation.

The group of 13 open water swimmers will swim from Robben Island to Big Bay Beach in Bloubergstrand, Western Cape.

Frere Hospital paediatric oncologist Barry Van Emmenes said the swim has always been on his bucket list.

“The butterflies in my stomach are humming already about the swim.

“ My inspiration are my patients and raising awareness for CHOC,” Van Emmenes said.

The distance the group will swim is just over 7.4 km.

Van Emmenes grew up in Cape Town and swam in the cool waters, although he has not done a swim of this distance before.

“We will have a skipper and lookout and there will be scheduled breaks every 25 minutes. There’s also the option to be pulled in should the sea conditions not be great,” he said.

The target for the swim is R30,000 with the group having already achieved more than half at the time of gong to print.

The CHOC Cows is a group of people on a mission to make a difference to children with cancer and their families.

The “moomen”, as they are affectionately known, are Greg Harris, Wayne Gallow, Avron Vides, Vic Beltrame, Mark Currin and Mike Loewe. The ‘moomaids’ are Joy Roach, Gail Wild, Marie-Claire Hand, Barbara Bryceland, Vicki Schlimper and Mandy Uys.

The group will wear their distinct cow pattern swimming costumes and trunks for the event.

CHOC regional manager Debbie Kleinenberg said they were thrilled to finally have a bunch of Cows in the city.

“We’re super excited as its something we’ve dreamed of for a long time, and honoured to have Barry [Van Emmenes] on board. There’s also the amazing relationship between CHOC and the Frere Hospital oncology unit,” Kleinenberg said.

To donate to cause, visit

UPDATE: All CHOC fundraising events (both internal and external) and CHOC Cow sporting activities have been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic


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