I’m challenging myself #BECAUSE I want to protect the planet.

By Anna Crawford

Chilly Crawls for Change

I’m challenging myself I want to protect the planet

the ice (loosing) and seas (rising) deserve our full attention.

As we dive into 2021 I’m taking on a chilly personal challenge #BECAUSE.....

I want to bring awareness to the severe environmental issues that I think about everyday as a "big ice" researcher. Through this community fundraising effort we can turn that awareness into action. 

For every $5 (CAD) raised I will swim one stroke in the frigid North Sea on January 21, 2021. Every $5, and every North Sea stroke (sans wetsuit) is significant!

This initiative is part of the launch of Greenpeace Canada's new, fun and impactful fundraising platform through which we can all challenge ourselves, make a difference or donate our birthdays (for example) to raise funds for this independent, solutions-oriented organization. Full disclosure: I have volunteered with Greenpeace for the past 13 years and am currently the Chair of Greenpeace Canada's Board of Directors. I am continually impressed by what this organization delivers and I want to do everything that I can (including battling waves and shivers in the North Sea) to ensure that our staff and volunteers have the resources they need to successfully undertake their important work. It benefits us all.

I know my friends, family and colleagues care about these issues as much as I do and have supported my work with Greenpeace over the past years in many ways. I greatly appreciate you all! It will be quite something to think of each of you while I'm in the water on the 21st!

My Achievements

Personalized my page

Made a self-donation

Shared my profile page

Received my first donation

Increased my fundraising goal

Reached 25% of my fundraising goal

Reached 50% of my fundraising goal

Reached 75% of my fundraising goal

Reached my fundraising goal

Thanked my donors

My Updates

Thank You and What It is All About

Saturday 23rd Jan

Yesterday morning the clouds parted, the sun shone, and the big event went down swimmingly! 

A HUGE thank you goes out to friends and family who generously supported this chilly endeavour. Together we raised $910 for Greenpeace Canada, which, at $5 a stroke, equated to 182 QUICK crawls in the North Sea off the coast of St Andrews, Scotland. 

There was a degree of apprehension about how long I was going to need to stay in the 6 ˚C water yesterday. Excitement for the big day, and warm feelings from re-connecting with friends through this campaign, ultimately won out and every stroke was completed. I hope the pictures give a sense of the trepidation, fun, and relief associated with the various stages of the morning dunk.

This (really cold!) dip was chosen as my fundraising event because, in addition to hopes of grabbing attention, focusing on the sea and coastline allows me to connect to my research into glacier retreat in Antarctica. The observed and expected changes to the Antarctic Ice Sheet will change the coastline we were along yesterday in Scotland, coastlines in Canada (the longest in the world!) -  everywhere.    

As a glaciologist, I volunteer my time with Greenpeace because the organization demands the degree of action that I know is necessary given the magnitude of climate change we (including glaciers) face. My involvement with the organization has evolved over 15 years from grassroots activities in San Francisco, Thunder Bay and Ottawa to taking on a governance role as a member of Greenpeace Canada's Board of Directors.  

I also give my time to Greenpeace because it is a solutions-based and independent organization. That means it doesn't take money from governments or businesses, which allows the organization to say what needs to be said and, as mentioned above, demand the level of change necessary given the alarming climate change and biodiversity loss that is currently underway. 

That principle of independence also means that Greenpeace relies on donations from folks like us. Greenpeace Canada has recently developed a peer-to-peer fundraising platform, which I used to connect with you all and organize this event. The platform allows us all to be involved in spreading awareness of environmental issues and Greenpeace Canada's efforts to address them, and ensure that the organization gets the financial support it needs to carry out this work that benefits us all. These events or challenges can take many forms and I fully recommend organizing one yourself. I can't overstate how rewarding and warming (after a bit of distance from yesterday's beach adventure) this experience has been. 

Be well, everyone!


Weather delay

Thursday 21st Jan
Thank you, everyone, for your generous support! It's really fun for me to connect again with you all and have you all "with" me in this adventure. The wind, waves and precipitation made it (even more) uncomfortable to do the plunge today. Fret not! We're on for tomorrow morning. I'm hoping to be able to share some pictures of a St Andrews sunrise with you. Those scenes are fantastic!

Thank you to my donors


Derek Tokarski

Unless you have to chainsaw through a metre of ice it's not really that chilly.


Dixie Smith

Go girl. Swim hard to stay warm. Hope you raise tons to save the world!


Brad And Judi

Great idea and great cause, Anna! With a little promotion here, we could raise enough to get you all the way to Denmark... May the sun be shining brightly in Scotland on the 21st!


John Crawford



Linda Hudon

Oooh, Anna, You make those guys breaking the skim ice to swim in Lake George look like sissies! Jim and I applaud you, from the comfort of our nice warm easy chairs. Great work


Sara Whitteker

Anna! This is awesome! I'm afraid to make you chillier! Miss working with you!


Sheila & John

Worthy cause but frigid challenge (I'm cold just thinking of it!). Thanks for raising awareness (and funds!).



A pleasure to support (financially & dippingly), as per ever.


Celia Cole

Go carefully, Anna! Thank you to you and your Greenpeace board for all that you're doing.


Alex Kochon

You’re one crazy mo fo! 👏👏


Sue Birge

You go girl! Looking forward to photos. 👍👍


Alana Thomas

This is great, love the sea ice connection to taking strokes in a chilly sea! Good luck, hope you have a nice hot tea waiting for you On shore for afterwards :)


Farrah Khan

Way to go Anna!!


Anna Crawford


Dave Beddoe

If the seals start laughing, just ignore them.


Alison Cook

Good luck Anna and enjoy (I know I wouldn't so I respect you all the more!).


Sid Choudhuri


Cupar Clan

Own that sea! Super-duper effort Anna, the cause is well worth the pain... All our very warmest thoughts!




Mary T

Have fun Anna!


Maggie Munoff

Wooo I am so proud of all the work you are doing with Greenpeace!


Hani Louz

Make sure it's on video with sound 😁 !!


Leah Rosetti

Get it girl!


Conan Maclean

I'm in awe Anna! Will be thinking of you on the 21st!


Anna Geiger-whitlock



Miriam Wilson

WOW ANNA YOU ARE SO BRAVE!!! Thank you so much for taking on this challenge. <3