Monday, August 3, 2015

ALS icebucket challenge

I came across this post from last summer that I forgot to publish.  I think I will do that now, since it's coming up on the anniversary! Remember the HUGE Ice Bucket Challenge last summer?
Goodness, my kid were so little and cute!!!


So this whole #ALSicebucketchallenge has been going on for a bit and has become this huge trendy thing to do; you can't go a day without someone mentioning it or someone posting a video of themselves participating and challenging others. It has been absolutely crazy! I have enjoyed watching all of those who have been a part of it and been blown away by how huge it has become. What has completely surprised me is how it is actually working as a real fundraiser!  People are actually donating to the ALS Society, and I have read today that through this ice bucket challenge they have actually received over $10 million in donations! WOW. How cool is that?

I don't know much about ALS, and I don't know anyone afflicted with this terrible disease, so it is not something that is close to myself or my family, but I am so thrilled that people are actually following through with their donations. This hasn't just become some type of trendy thing to do: pour buckets of water on our heads and then "dare" someone else to do the same thing and that's it. With how many different types of challenges out there that sweep across our media feed, and all of the past "slacktivism" that permeates our culture, where something new pops up as trendy so fast, it is easy to see how fads can end up meaning nothing. so it is so wonderful to see that people actually are donating and are spreading the word.

So good on you who have done your part and are passing it along to others to do the same! Thumbs up!

I wanted to learn more about ALS and how this started and more about what has become "the thing" to do right now.  If you are wondering as well, check out this video on Pete Frates' Challenge and how it went from just some sort of "cold water challenge" to something that actually made a difference for others. Very touching.

According to the ALS Society of Canada, "ALS (also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease) is a progressive neuromuscular disease in which nerve cells die and leave voluntary muscles paralyzed.

Every day two or three Canadians die of the disease."

Now, that is devastating!  There appears to be no connection to ice water and ALS (according to the video above), but it has brought along so much awareness to an otherwise forgotten disease. We are so used to seeing the pink ribbon for breast cancer, and the daffodil fund for cancer and the Underwear Affair for cancers "below the waist", and the Cops for Cancer for children dealing with cancer....(wow there is a lot of things for cancer fundraising).... and the walks for autism, and Tough Mudder (seriously, that is so cool! check out their site and their fun video that makes you want to sign up right now!) that has raised over $6 Million for Wounded Warrior Project, and the Colour Run who have donated $3 million to charities ..... and these are all greatBut it is good to see an organization that isn't well known getting some attention too.  But we need to spread the love.  If you are considering doing the Ice Bucket Challenge, please consider donating to a worthy cause. There are so many out there. There has to be some that mean something to you, something that you can get behind. If it isn't ALS, then find something out there. 


We were talking about the whole challenge the other night, the kids and I, and Abi says that she sortof wishes that she would get nominated. And lo and behold, the very next day, I see a video of a friend who has accepted the challenge along with her son, who has nominated all of those who volunteered with him on the Serve 2014 Team! There was her challenge!  She was slightly excited! I made her sit and think about it and consider who she wanted to challenge and who she wanted to donate to before she just rushed out and had water dumped on her head!

In the end, she donated some money to House of Hope (part of Wagner Hills Ministry) as well as the ASL Society.  (check out this cute blog post of the Serve team at House of Hope I found on their site.  Abi is the first blue shirt with the pink/red hair! They are painting the building, and eventually she got up on a scaffold, eek!)  The House of Hope is a 14-bed residence where women can go for Christ-centred healing and counseling and training as they break free from addictive lifestyles.  I think it is so wonderful that Abi felt like supporting this group further.  If you would like to donate to them as well, there is a handy "donate" button in the top right corner of their website ( 

The whole ice bucket challenge ended up becoming a huge family thing. And when I say family, I mean just the kids! I was the videographer and cameragirl, and Hunny was at work. But all of the kids got in on it and thought it would be fun to have water dumped on their heads! It started to get a bit silly in the end, with them shouting "I nominate you!" and jumping around, "Do me next!"  I, honestly, was beginning to feel a bit frustrated that they weren't taking it seriously enough. This wasn't Water Wars, this was to fund-raise and bring awareness! How did it become some sort of splash park in my front lawn? Argh. Haha.

Then I remembered that most of my kids are under the age of ten and it was like 32 degrees out, so I let them go at it!  We took videos and photos and the kids had a blast! 

Abi had Kai, Eden and Rhys dump buckets on her head and challenged her Aunty Jenn, Uncle Andy and our neighbour boys to do it as well! (and to date all but one has done it! Not too bad!) Every one of the kids participated. I was so impressed! I had to laugh when Rhys nominated "Grandma of 'Grandma and Grandpa'" to do it as well! hahaha. (I didn't actually post his as a challenge to anyone. I just love how he mentioned her and singled her out as if my parents are a collective. She's not just any Grandma, she's Grandma of "Grandma and Grandpa" fame! So cute!)  I was surprised that none of the Youngers cried when they had water spilled onto their heads!  (the water wasn't that cold. We used water from the hose and had added ice cubes at first, but they all melted in the heat)

In the end, the kids were cooler, they got to participate in something trendy and fun, and we got to learn more about a disease, and we got to raise awareness for other groups. All in all, it was a good day!


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