A Deeper Look At The Man Who Started The Ice Bucket Challenge
The Ice Bucket Challenge is a viral social phenomena that we will all remember for years to come. It has united people from all walks of life and it’s not finished yet.
Pete Frates, a 29 year old Bostonian and former outfield star for Boston College, is the person credited for getting the #IceBucketChallenge off the ground. Frates was diagnosed with ALS back in the spring of 2012 and has been fighting the disease ever since. In an interview with ESPN, Frates said his battle against ALS is his life’s work; it’s what the “big man upstairs” has put him on earth to accomplish.
As of Monday August 18th, existing donors along with 307, 598 new donors have contributed $15.6 million to The ALS Association. This is remarkable considering the Association only received $1.8 million during the same period the previous year (July 29th to August 18th). If you’re doing the math, that’s a 766% increase!
As of Sept. 11 that number’s up to $112 million in Ice Bucket Challenge donations!
Whether or not you’ve participated, or you’re tired of seeing your social feeds overrun with challenge videos, take a step back with us and consider just how big a difference this seemingly silly challenge is making in our fight to end ALS.
The reason all these people are chilling their brains is not some new health fad but to raise awareness for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), the lethal neurodegenerative disorder also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. The original idea was that when the gauntlet was thrown down in the ice bucket challenge, you either need to give $100 to ALS or dump ice water on your head. Most people seem to be opting to both donate and get soaked, posting the videos on social media.
A big Internet meme like this naturally brings out the contrarians. But they’re wrong. The Ice Bucket Challenge is awesome. Here are three reasons why.
#1: It raises money for ALS
#2: It encourages people to donate to charity in general.
#3: The Ice Bucket Challenge Is Raising Enough Money To Matter
So, will you accept the challenge?
Opportunities come disguised as problems or failures. But opportunities do exist in abundance for all of us and, if you are willing to open up and explore your “problems” with this new attitude, some exciting surprises await you. Your struggles and stresses are challenges and opportunities.
As Arnold Schwarzenegger says, “I believe very much in the struggle.”
Just as opportunities come with challenges, life cannot be all joy with no pain. What we must learn to do is accept challenges, make mistakes, endure pain, and keep on going…being sure to acknowledge and celebrate our successes along the way too.
Lyricist and Broadway producer Oscar Hammerstein believed himself to be a happy man despite the personal disappointments and global conflicts he witnessed. Inspired by nature, Hammerstein says his happiness came from embracing his own imperfections. Please listen to this essay recorded in the 1950s.