The IIL Dons and Divas team paddle again!

17 October 2017

For the past 11 years a special event in the early September calendar has been happening high up in the Jura mountains. Set against the most beautiful scenery, on the Lac de Joux.

The ESCA Paddle for Cancer charity event was set up over a decade ago and has seen up to 30,000 festival visitors, participants and volunteers being a part of an event to raise money for a wonderful local charity. Paddle for Cancer is our annual cancer awareness and fundraising event and brings together both the local and international communities to work together to help cancer patients and their loved ones directly.

The IIL Dons and Divas team has been part of every festival event since the very first year in 2007. Dragon boating is the ultimate sport for team building. Our team has brought together teachers, assistants, students and parents from the school. As the event organisers say ‘a team that paddles together shines together’.


As team captain and drummer I have been so very proud of all the members who have volunteered their Sunday to support such an amazing event. The sixteen paddlers meet together in the team tent and then the day begins. The excitement starts. Against the most beautiful lake, the paddlers board their own dragon boat. Listening to the drummer and professional helm they begin the race. The paddlers are seated in pairs and take the lead from the drummer. A race lasting less than 2 minutes begins. The IIL Dons and Divas work together as a team. The race is quick. It can be very wet. The team paddle together, keeping a rhythm going to the sound of the drum.

We are now proud to have our own Mini IlL Dons and Divas. The excitement of their race has seen the lake shore full of families encouraging the mini teams to paddle towards the finish line.


The Paddle for Cancer Dragonboat Festival is about so much. It is a time to support amazing charities in the local area. It is a time to bring people together to work together as team to take part in the races. It is a time to volunteer. It is a time to cheer and encourage and definitely a time to smile and have fun!

We look forward to having another wonderful team at the event, look out for the updates and news in March 2018.


Rebecca Grove