Lap it up and swim for life

Youth Live4Life is gearing up for the annual LAP it UP event, a fitness and fundraising challenge aimed at raising awareness for youth mental health and suicide prevention in rural and regional communities.

The event, which runs from 1 October to 15 October, encourages participants to swim laps and make a splash for a worthy cause.

Youth Live4Life’s fundraising and marketing manager Cheryl Eyssens emphasises the holistic benefits of LAP it UP.

“LAP it UP not only promotes a healthy mind and body, it fosters connections and camaraderie, encouraging participants to strive for their very best both in and out of the water,“ she said.

LAP it UP was initially inspired by the efforts of father and daughter team, Sean and Kirsten McKinney, who organised a swimming event in their local Gisborne pool back in 2018. Their goal was to swim 2866 laps, symbolising the number of Australians who tragically took their own lives in 2016. Surpassing expectations, over 5500 laps were completed on that day, leaving a lasting impact on the community.

Following the success of LAP it UP in 2022, Youth Live4Life is determined to carry on the McKinney’s legacy in 2023.

With World Suicide Prevention Day approaching on 10 September and R U OK Day on 14 September, the event aims to shed light on the importance of youth mental health and suicide prevention in rural and regional areas.

All funds raised during the LAP it UP challenge will be directed towards Youth Live4Life, which focuses on youth mental health and suicide prevention, specifically targeting young people residing in rural and regional communities.

Whether it’s in the ocean, a 50-meter Olympic-style pool, or even a wading pool in one’s backyard, participants are encouraged to make their laps as long or short as they prefer. The key is to keep moving, make a splash, and count those laps!

To get involved and make a difference, swimmers across Australia are encouraged to register now at