ALS Association Celebrates 3rd Anniversary of ALS Ice Bucket Challenge with New Campaign

Margarida Azevedo, MSc avatar

by Margarida Azevedo, MSc |

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ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

The ALS Association is celebrating the third anniversary of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge with a new awareness and fund-raising campaign to support the amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) community.

The new campaign, “Every Drop Adds Up,” with the help of Kwittken, a global communications agency, aims to shed light on the complex factors and impact of the disease on patients and their families and friends.

The month-long campaign began Aug. 1 by sharing photos and stories of those fighting ALS, aiming to inspire empathy and determination to end ALS, and providing every voice and experience a place in this quest.

“We couldn’t be more excited to spearhead this new campaign phase with The ALS Association,” Aaron Kwittken, global chairman and CEO of Kwittken, said in a press release. “We recognize that many nonprofit organizations have limited resources, making it difficult to adapt to rapidly changing consumer behaviors, while seeking to resonate with the public. We are determined to be a major part of that support, in a way that highlights this terrible disease by celebrating the resilience of those impacted on the most human level,” he said.

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge became an international sensation in 2014, inspiring an estimated 17 million online videos. These videos were seen by more than 440 million people, more than 10 billion times, and donations reached an unprecedented $115 million, raised over an eight-week period. Celebrities, professional athletes, political figures, and the whole community participated. Virtually everyone knew about the social media challenge and wanted to take part in it.

Three years later, the ALS Association is looking to the future for ways to capture the spirit of the ALS Ice Bucked Challenge through new means of storytelling and sharing.

“The ALS Association is unwavering in our mission to improve the quality of life for people with ALS while furthering research for new treatments and a cure. With Kwittken at our side, we are confident we can better tell our story and advance our mission,” said Brian Frederick, the ALS Association’s executive vice president of communications and development.

In December 2016, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History inaugurated its long-term exhibition “Giving in America” to display the history of philanthropy’s role in shaping the U.S.

The exhibition explores how charity and philanthropy have marked the course of American history. Contemporary philanthropy offers examples, like the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, which challenged people to donate to the ALS Association and pour a bucket of ice water over their heads to show their solidarity and support.

The collection includes an ice bucket used in one of the first documented challenges, which was started by professional golfer Chris Kennedy when he challenged his cousin, Jeanette Senerchia, whose husband suffers from ALS, to tip a bucket of water over her head. The ensuing phenomenon went viral on social media.

Much like the spirit of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, “one of the major goals of this exhibition is to inspire future generations to continue to give of their time, talent and resources,” said John Gray, director of the Smithsonian, at the time.