Viral Ice Buckets

So, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking since this whole #IceBucketChallenge got started and it makes me proud. Proud that so many people in such a seemingly calloused world stand up and make a difference. Sure, it’s a fun way to donate and raise awareness…I mean, who doesn’t want to shock their systems with a cold shower to the noggin?…but you still have to do it.

And do it, we have.

To the tune of $88.5 million in the days between July 29 and August 26. (Figures found on the ALS site this morning)

But that’s not the best thing. One point nine million new donors have emerged during this time and millions more have watched the countless videos circulating in the cybersphere.

Awareness goes a long way in the daily living of ALS patients. While many of those currently diagnosed with ALS may not see the benefit of these generous donations, the support that has been shown to the ALS community cannot be measured. Nor can the outpouring of funds be dismissed for the much-needed research to alleviate the symptoms of ALS and help find a cure in the future. 

Wouldn’t it be lovely if all the good ideas and compassion we have bottled up inside could go viral every day? We could inundate the world with peace and love and hope in a mere 30 days. (I hear a Miss America speech in here somewhere : ) 

But of course, there are the naysayers. Every cause has one (yes, you dolled-up, plastic surgeried actress with the fake implants and new lips, I’m talking to you). And the trolls…you know, the people who deliberately antagonize and create heartache in the midst of all things good. For every uplifting or heartbreaking story, a thread or a post exists to rip it apart. Yet despite the ratio of good to bad, these cruel comments have more power than all the good vibes floating around. We just have to see past the trash talk and focus on the generosity of spirit that we have within us. We have to peek at the reality behind the bite and understand that some people just like to rain on others’ parades. And when we can do this, we can accomplish anything.

So, thanks to those who have donated. Thanks to those who have soaked themselves in freezing water for a cause they didn’t know existed. Thanks to all you wonderful people who are smothering the voices of the naysayers with your good deeds and generous hearts.

Go viral. One bucket at a time!

What is your cause? If you could pick anything at all to go viral what would it be and why?

Curious minds want to know.

P.S. Mine would be literacy.



4 responses to “Viral Ice Buckets

  1. Just last night I held the video-camera while my husband (rather gleefully) dumped the ice-bucket over my dear friend’s head… (She called out our 18-year-old-son, who–of course–tagged his dad in turn, so we’ll be doing it again with positions switched!) When she asked for our assistance, it was the first we’d heard of the challenge–but when we got home that night the first thing I saw on Facebook was somebody kvetching about how useless the ice-bucket-act is. “You could do something USEFUL instead of something stupid”… I don’t know the writer of that comment (friend of a friend), but I didn’t hold my tongue. “Getting doused may not be useful, but the money raised IS.” Maybe it’s sour grapes from someone who’s been nominated and was too chicken. 😉

    If I could pick a cause to go viral? Universal accessibility of both mental-health care and substance abuse treatment!

    • Beautiful, Kana!

      It seems as if while we “get” that there’s a connection between mental health and substance abuse, we service providers rarely address both simultaneously for the best outcome. It’s such a shame.

      I love that your family embraced the challenge. It definitely is for a good cause regardless of what the sour grapes are saying. Thanks so much for sharing your story.

  2. Orphaned children. They’re everywhere and yet they’re invisible. Thanks for the post!

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