Today I took the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. I myself have not been a heavy contributor to charities nor have I had any awareness of what ALS even was until this past week. And I think that is the entire point of the success behind this ALS campaign. With a simple video challenge done in the style of a chain letter, over 53 million dollars have been raised to help fight what has been an incurable disease with very little actual support or public awareness.
This ALS challenge is doing more to raise awareness, educate the public and raise much-needed money than any number of boring PSAs or nationwide marketing campaigns I’ve seen. I’m not trying to denigrate the efforts of anyone to get the word out about their charities or causes. I’m merely pointing out that the elements of humor and participation succeed where so much else has not. I think many charities right now are probably looking at their fundraising efforts in a whole new light.
ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, is a horrible thing. I have no words to describe how awful it would be to contract this illness and I feel for those who have it and their families and friends. Hopefully, the funds being raised are enough to find a cure within my lifetime.
Some may consider it ridiculous or even absurd to pour a bucket of water on their head in order to raise awareness or nudge people into doing the right thing by giving a little for a good cause. Well, that may be but human nature is what it is. And if this helps the research and helps saves lives, which I certainly hope it does, then I can’t help but support it with all my heart.
I hope that this may spurn you to find out a little bit more about this and to give a little too. It certainly isn’t going to hurt anything and who knows, with your help we just might help beat this thing for real.