By now, you’ve no doubt seen your Facebook news feed flooded with people dumping buckets of ice cold water on themselves to raise awareness for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s Disease), and celebrities and politicians have also taken part.
Never one to turn down a good cause, correspondents Paula Faris, Sara Haines, Tory Johnson and more took the plunge.
After the disease robbed former Boston College baseball captain Pete Frates of his ability to walk and talk, he and his wife, Julie, co-created the ALS ice bucket challenge with friend and fellow ALS patient Pat Quinn.
“Someone nominates you to do the challenge. You have 24 hours to do it or you’re supposed to donate $100 to your choice of ALS charity,” Quinn, 31, from Yonkers, New York, told ABC News.
In just two weeks, their initiative has attracted more than 106,000 new donors to one of the worlds' leading ALS research organizations, helping pour in an ice-shattering $5.7 million. That’s four times the organization’s typical intake.
“The more people who get involved, the more money will be raised, the more research we can support,” Quinn said.
ALS is a progressive disease that attacks nerve cells that control movement, according to the CDC. It can cause paralysis, and most people die within five years of being diagnosed.
If you’d like to donate to this cause, two non-profit ALS organizations are the ALS Association and Project ALS. Before you donate to any non-profit, it is always wise to first understand where your money is going (what programs the organization is funding and how much of your money will go to those programs). Useful websites to find information on many charities are Charity Navigator and Guide Star.