Staying Afloat

Calling all parents and other Reach for the Wall readers:

It was about a year ago when many of us were saddened to learn that the Washington Post was shutting down Reach for the Wall (RFTW).  Where would we get the best local coverage of swimming and diving?  Where would we be able to look up little Johnny’s 25 fly time from last summer?

As parents who had come to appreciate the value of our childrens’ participation in aquatics – the value of the athleticism, the discipline, the camaraderie – we recognized the importance of making sure that RFTW would have a continued presence in our community.  Not only to continue to support the amazing efforts of all our kids, but to continue to weave together the rich fabric of our aquatics community – everything from summer swimming and mini meets to our hometown participation in the Rio Olympic Games.

When we took over RFTW from the Washington Post, our goal was to provide a forum for all of the various aquatic communities in the Washington D.C. metro area (40,000+ swimmers and divers in 12+ summer swim leagues, 13,000+ members of USA Swimming, 7,000+ high school swimmers and divers, etc.) to stay abreast of developments in each of these communities, and to communicate with each other in order to promote the growth of aquatics in our metro area.

So, what did we achieve in our first year?  We published almost 200 articles on a variety of subjects – swim meet results, athlete statistics, training and nutrition tips, useful goods and services – that targeted a wide range of audiences from novices to grizzled veterans.  We provided you with a richer database of statistics to review by increasing the amount of summer league, high school and PVS meet results that you can access.  And we significantly expanded our audience across D.C., Maryland and Virginia.

Thank you for following us in 2016 – we hope you have enjoyed our coverage and will continue to support us this year!

In 2017, we want to continue to expand our coverage of area swim and diving meets in order to broaden our database of athlete statistics and to provide you with deeper analysis of those events.  And, we want to add video coverage of key summer league, high school and PVS meets in order to better showcase our aquatics community and to drive its further growth.

But to continue, we now need your financial support.  To date, our 6 member staff has run RFTW and developed its content purely as volunteers, and we cover the hard cost of operating the site from our own pockets.  This is not sustainable long term.

The good news is that the IRS has formally recognized us as a §501(c)(3) public charity, meaning that your contributions to Reach for the Wall now are tax deductible.  And, we added a convenient “Donate” button below (and on the top right hand side of our site) to make it easy for you to support us using PayPal or any major credit card.

If everyone reading this gave at least $10 right now, our fundraising for 2017 would quickly be done.  If you enjoy reading our site, please take one minute to keep it online.

Thank you.

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