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Specialist swimming brand SOUL CAP is delighted to announce a new partnership with Alice Dearing, one of the world’s top marathon swimmers and the only black swimmer currently representing Great Britain.
This new partnership aims to promote greater diversity and inclusivity in the world of swimming, breaking down the barriers that have kept BAME athletes from pursuing the sport to a competitive level, and dismantling some of the stereotypes surrounding ethnic minorities and their participation in swimming.
Through a set of community-based workshops in local swimming pools across the country, Dearing and SOUL CAP hope to give ambitious swimmers from the BAME community the motivation and guidance they need to develop and become confident swimmers, with advice and tips from an international champion.
"Growing up, I was blessed to have had so much support as I worked my way up to swimming for Great Britain," said Dearing. "But I know that swimming as a sport hasn't always been seen as accessible to people from minority communities. Increasing diversity in the water is a huge passion of mine, so with SOUL CAP and these new swimming workshops, we hope we can start to dispel those barriers."
Dearing has been a prominent competitor on the global swimming stage since she was crowned World Junior Open Water Champion in 2016 at the age of 19, representing Great Britain at three World Championships and three European Championships. She is currently aiming to qualify for the Olympic Games, where she would be the first woman of colour to swim for Great Britain.
"When we heard about Alice and her mission, we immediately felt a connection," said Michael Chapman, Director at SOUL CAP, a swimming brand that specialises in swimming caps for long and voluminous hair. "We felt that we shared those same values, and we're excited to do our part to help."
Founded in 2017, SOUL CAP has become the market-leading brand in swimming caps for big hair, shipping over 30,000 products to countries all over the world and appearing in The Independent's 10 Best Swimming Caps.
Their new partnership with Dearing includes plans for two swimming workshops in Loughborough and London (which have been postponed due the ongoing COVID-19 crisis), as well as plans for Dearing to work with SOUL CAP to design and create her own limited-edition, signature swimming cap.
Dearing will also be authoring an ongoing series of blog posts in collaboration with SOUL CAP. These articles will examine the themes of inclusivity in the world of swimming, drawing from Dearing's own personal experiences to shed new light on the challenges and barriers that BAME athletes can face.
This new partnership with Dearing is the second partnership for SOUL CAP with a social focus, adding to their long-standing ties with The Wonder Foundation, a charity that helps disadvantaged women and communities through education.
"So many individuals from BAME communities just don't see a place for people like them in the swimming world," said Toks Ahmed-Salawudeen, Director at SOUL CAP. "We think it's about time we opened up swimming for everyone."
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