Eleven-year-old Sylas Thompson raised $37,217.48 for the Women’s Resource Centre and Grassroots Kindhearts with his daily swim off Tyee Spit for 36 consecutive days during won of the coldest Februaries in some time.
At a ceremony on Sunday, Thompson and his grandmother Sheryl Thompson unveiled the grand total at Rose Harbour with friends, family and supporters in attendance – and a lot of food. Sylas was showered with affection, gratitude and gifts from the two organizations he pledged to help.
“It’s really hard to explain how grateful a person can be,” his emotional grandmother, Sheryl Thompson said. “That it just brings tears to my eyes. I am here to say thank you for making this fundraising endeavour the most awesome ride.”
Sylas’ goal was to raise $30,000 but he beat that by $7,217.48.
“I said to him are you kidding me and he said ‘yeah I’ll do it,’” Sheryl said. “You don’t know what this kid knows and what he feels.”
Sylas gave credit to the community at large. In addition to contributing money, he was joined by fellow students, individuals and community organizations on many of his daily swims.
“I just want to thank the community because without the community I wouldn’t even be able to raise $1,” Sylas said.
Sylas was inspired to do the swims because his grandmother volunteers with the Women’s Resource Centre and contributes to the meals for the homeless that Grassroots Kindhearts provides.