Like a second installment of a popular franchise, the Ice Bucket Challenge returns this summer, with likely many videos to soon crowd your News Feed on Facebook. After becoming the most popular social media phenomenon last year, the fight for funding and awareness will be continuing in 2015, starting this month.
Last year, more than 17 million people uploaded videos of themselves dropping large buckets of icy cold water down their heads in the name of combating ALS and then challenged three of their friends to do the same. The videos were watched by 440 million people and gathering a number of 10 billion views in total.
It’s now the hopes of the foundation that will become an annual event to raise money for research to optimistically find a cure or better treatments for the disease that affects 30,000 people each year. ALS, otherwise referred to as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, is a neurodegenrative condition that progresses through time and affects the nerve cells in the spinal cord and brain.
It severely cuts the lifespan of the patient, crippling their lifestyle due to killing the neurons responsible for locomotor functions, possibly leading to complete paralysis and inevitably ending with premature death. A staggering 90-95% of the cases are still unknown as to what even causes the tragic condition.
In 2014, millions of people across social media happily participated in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, pouring ice cold water on themselves to spread awareness and donating funds to ALS Association. The success was spectacular and they’re looking to continue on the tradition until a permanent fix is found.
Ranging from the average citizen, to famous actors, actresses, singers, politicians and any kind of celebrity to the president of the United States, many found new, innovative and entertaining ways of showering themselves with a bucket of cold water for ALS. It has been one of the most widely-spread and efficient uses of their fame on social media to date.
Last year, the viral phenomenon managed to raise a total of $115 million for the ALS Association and they’re hoping to bring even more in 2015. However, it remains to be seen if the feat can be accomplished, as one can never tell with social media.
Perhaps it was a one year event that is not meant to last throughout the ages, but the Ice Bucket Challange has been undoubtedly successful regardless and it’s kicking off for a second year now in between August and October.
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