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06 Apr 2022

Durban North swim coach raises awareness of ocean health

(Northglen News) Picture: Sarah Houston of Durban North is seconding well-known Durban swimmer, Sarah Ferguson, on her swim from Durban to Cape Town to save the ocean from plastic pollution.

Give Sarah Houston the ocean and she’s in her happy place.

The Durban North swim coach is currently involved in the longest swim from Durban to Cape Town all in the name of ridding the ocean of plastic, which is the aim of the #OneOceanSwim. Houston has been coaching swimming at Chelsea Preparatory School for more than eight years. She seconds Sarah Ferguson, who is a Guinness World Book of Records title holder and the founder of Breath Conservation.

“I have been seconding Sarah Ferguson on her #OneOceanSwim since February 21. She has reached Hamburg in the Eastern Cape in a total of 20 swimming days with a total distance of 517kms,” said Houston.

They generally aim to swim for four hours a day. Houston said her association with Ferguson started about six years ago when the conservationist came to her for coaching.

“At the time, Sarah (Ferguson) wanted to swim the Ka’iwi Channel in Hawaii. We joked that she took me with as an insurance policy against the giant shore break that can occur on the beach where she would finish her crossing,” said Houston.

She said her passion for the water and all things related, her swimming skills and her relationship with Ferguson were the deciding factors that led her to seconding her.

“Seconding Sarah (Ferguson) means that I feed her every 30 minutes while she is swimming. Sometimes I jump in and swim with her. I also monitor her stroke and just try to make sure she is as happy as can be,” said Houston. The mission is to encourage single use plastic.

“When you buy a cool drink at the shop, do not choose a plastic bottle, buy a can rather. Why? Because cans are highly recycled and have a value. Some might argue you can recycle a bottle. Yes, but the amount of plastic that is ‘consumed’ daily recycling, can never keep pace. The only answer is to use less,” she said.

“Choose glass over plastic. Say no to straws. Take your own bags,” she added. Follow Sarah Ferguson swim at: www.facebook.com/sarah fergusonenduranceathlete/