A 15-year old seasonal Gravenhurst resident is once again raising funds and food donations for the Manna Food Bank.

Samuel Wood is ‘Swimming for Food” to raise awareness of the need for year-round donations to the food bank – and starting today, and for the next 30 days – he’ll be swimming a kilometre per day in Muldrew Lake.

Two summers ago, Samuel joined the Will Swim for Food campaign – joining 11 other kids – who swam five kilometres a day for a whole week while raising food donations.

Since he’ll be swimming solo – he decided to change things up for this year.

“This year, I’m choosing to do one kilometre per day for 30 days simply because I am no longer on a swim team, and it would be much more challenging to do the five kilometres. As well, it will give me more time to promote and advertise my cause.”

Last year, Wood raised over $1500 and four ‘banana boxes’ of food, and he says he’s hoping to surpass that this year.

He also notes that given COVID-19 and the uncertain times we’re facing, it’s important for him to give back to the community he considers a second home.

“Around summertime, it’s a very slow time for Manna. And I am a citizen of the Muskoka region, and so, I feel very lucky to be able to enjoy the town of Gravenhurst over the summers especially. For me, it’s like giving back to the community.”

Wood will be swimming each day from now until August 15.

Due to COVID-19, he adds that they’re happy to take financial donations, but if you are thinking of donating food – you’re asked to ensure that you donate canned goods or other items that can be easily sanitized.

If you’d like to make donations, you can head here.