In our home, it was something we saw our friends and family doing on Facebook, and something we had seen our favorite baseball players doing, and then our favorite musicians and actors, and so on. We knew it was raising awareness for something. That was all we knew.
That was all we needed to know; to know we needed to know more. People who are focused on the monetary rule of the challenge and the water conservation – are missing this monumental piece of vital information.
We didn’t know what we were raising awareness for. We knew it was a disease, and that it necessary to help find a cure. We wanted in. We wanted to help. We wanted to know more.
One by one, our family of five was nominated. The excitement in our home was exhilarating, we were joining millions of others in this challenge, we were banding together for the greater good, for a GOOD cause. It led us to inquire as to what disease we were raising awareness for. It was upon my research that I realized I had heard of it before, but had heard of it as Lou Gehrigs Disease, and still did not know what it really was, or how it affected the people living with it day in and day out. I looked it up. I read about it. I learned about it. I shared it with my family.
Now five people were made aware of this, the five people in my home. Then the five people we nominated, and the five people they nominated and so the ripple effect rippled on. No, we did not donate $10, we solely did the Ice Bucket Challenge, we talked about ALS, and tagged our friends and family. We donated our effort, our compassion, and our desire to help and to raise awareness. Is that insignificant for you? Is it your intent to teach your child or neighbor that the only awareness important is by monetary awareness?
If so, extending further clarification would be as worthless as the $10 you are donating. Your money, void of the understanding, compassion and desire to be learn; to band together with our communities and the world for the benefit of research and a cure is lacking any value.
Last night I was told, the purpose of this challenge was that you HAD to donate $10 along with dumping the ice water over your head. That if you could not donate $10, that you should not have accepted the challenge. So, I ask you this. If I were nominated by someone, and I did not have the $10, and I refused the challenge, what happens then? What happens to the next person who doesn’t have the $10 to donate, and is forced to refuse the challenge? THE AWARENESS STOPS. However, if we do the challenge, minus the $10, and nominate someone else, who nominates someone else, who donates $100 – what has happened? People who aren’t aware of the disease are learning about it, and money is donated toward the cause. THAT IS SPREADING AWARENESS. In every possible manner.
Since when do we only want someone’s help when money is involved? Since when do we not accept someone’s desire to help because they do not have money? What is that teaching our children and our society? A cure is not going to be found because you blindly handed over money, instead of those who are investing their time and understanding. Awareness bears no cost, awareness is a desire to know, to learn and to share. That is priceless, it is a gift to the people who live with ALS, who fight ALS, and the families who strive every day to make one more person understand what ALS is.
For more information please visit http://www.alsa.org.