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A nICE Way to Raise Awareness

Twitter and DenverBroncos.com

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge is the latest craze sweeping the internet. It started out as a fundraiser and promotional awareness for the ALSA, and is now a social media storm. 
 

While thousands of people have been participating in the ice bucket challenge everyday, not many can say they actually know what ALS, or Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, is.
 
Often referred to as Lou Gehrig's disease, ALSA describes the disease as "a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord." Basically, motor neurons reach from the brain to the spinal cord and to muscles throughout the body. When an individual has ALS, they lose their ability to control muscle movement, eventually leading to patients being paralyzed, and inevitably, death.
 
Right now there is only one FDA approved drug that slows the effects of the disease. The Ice Bucket Challenge is one way that we, the community, can help find a cure for ALS. 
 
Here's how it works: Someone who has done the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge can call out  numerous people to do the challenge by way of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or just in person. The nominees then have 24 hours to accept the challenge or donate $100 to the ALS Association (participants can also donate if they do the challenge).  A nominee must then record a video of themselves getting a bucket, or buckets, of ice water poured onto their head, and nominating other people.
 
This continuous circle has given a tremendous rise to awareness of ALS and research money. The Ice Bucket Challenge has helped ALSA raise 70.2 million dollars in a time period from July 29-August 24, an enormous difference versus the 2.5 million dollars collected in that time period last year. 
 
As of August 24, there are close to 2 million Instagram posts under the hashtag #alsicebucketchallenge. This is something that YOU can participate and make a difference in, whether it's by donating or just having ice water drench you, to strike out Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis.