ALS Ice Bucket Challenge Goes Viral


LU Greek members cool of for ALS

small ice bucket challenge
Greek Life Council, Inter-Fraternity Council, Campus Panhellenic Council cool off for ALS

Jordan Pfeifer | Staff Reporter

In the past few weeks, a global effort to raise awareness and funding for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) research has gone viral. ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nearly 30,000 Americans’ nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. Eventually, people with ALS lose the ability to initiate and control muscle movement, which often leads to total paralysis and death within two to five years of diagnosis.

The recent campaign centers on people filming and uploading themselves to social media sites dumping buckets of ice water on their heads before challenging others to do the same or donate to the ALS Association within 24 hours. The “pay-it-forward” aspect of this movement could be what is responsible for its rapid spread across the world.

“We have never seen anything like this in the history of the disease,” said Barbara Newhouse, President and CEO of The ALS Association, on “We couldn’t be more thrilled with the level of compassion, generosity and sense of humor that people are exhibiting as they take part in this impactful viral initiative.”

The ALS Association is the only national non-profit organization fighting Lou Gehrig’s Disease on every front, and has been doing so since 1985. Their mission includes providing care services to assist people with ALS and their families through a network of chapters working in communities across the nation, and a global research program focused on the discovery of treatments and eventually a cure for the disease.

There is no cure and only one drug approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration that modestly extends survival.

As of Monday, August 25, The ALS Association has received $79.7 million in donations compared to $2.5 million during the same time period last year (July 29 to August 25). These donations have come from existing donors and 1.7 million new donors to The Association.

With only about half of the general public knowledgeable about ALS, the Ice Bucket Challenge is making a profound difference.

“While the monetary donations are absolutely incredible,” said Newhouse, “the visibility that this disease is getting as a result of the challenge is truly invaluable. People who have never before heard of ALS are now engaged in the fight to find treatments and a cure for ALS.”

Submit your ALS Ice Bucket Challenge photos or videos to us to add to our collection by tagging Lindenlink or The Lindenwood Legacy in the post!

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