$30,000 for a 30th birthday

TURNING 30 is often considered a milestone, but few are celebrating it like Bolivian-born Adam Brisson, who will swim 30 kilometres to raise $30,000 for the La Paz orphanage he was adopted from as a baby.

“Rather than just having a big party to celebrate my 30th, I thought this would be a great way to give something back to a cause close to my heart,” Brisson said.

“I’ve been swimming at an elite level since I was five, so this is a way for me to do something worthwhile and have it be challenging.”

Brisson’s idea came after he swam 12 kilometres in three-and-a-half hours to raise money for autism research in March.

“It gave me the idea to use my swimming ability to swim for my own charity and passion.

“I’ve been training very hard. Swimming 12 kilometres was a fairly comfortable distance for me. I figured 30 kilometres would be a good goal to coincide with my 30th birthday and is a lot more ­challenging,” he explained.

“But the reason why I’m doing this will push me through any pain barrier.”

Brisson, who was adopted by an Australian Jewish family in 1983, graduated from Moriah College and participated in the 1997 Maccabiah Games in Israel.

He will swim 30 kilometres at the Botany Aquatic Centre on December 9 from when the pool opens at 8am until closing at 6pm.

Funds raised will benefit the Carlos De Villegas orphanage in La Paz, where Brisson spent the first six months of his life. He said there are a lot of adopted families in the Jewish community.

Almost $5000 has already been raised and he is confident that many people are waiting until the last few days of fundraising to dip into their pockets.

“$30,000 would make a significant difference to the orphanage.

“It relies almost entirely on sponsorship and donations from inside Bolivia and abroad.”

For more information and to donate, please visit www.givenow.com.au/auscaringforchildrenthree30s.

ALEXANDRA ROACH

Adam Brisson, pictured with a young orphan, at the Bolivian orphanage he is raising money for.