Former NBA star Yao Ming takes the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge on Saturday at the NBA Yao School in Beijing. Photo: Chinadaily
The Ice Bucket Challenge, sometimes called the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, is a charity activity involving dumping a bucket of ice water on one's head or donating to the ALS Association in the United States. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS,) a neurodegenerative disorder, is commonly called Lou Gehrig's disease, after the baseball player who had it.
One common stipulation gives 24 hours to complete the dare from the time they are nominated; otherwise, the participant has to donate at least $100 to the ASL Association
In the US, the campaign has caught people ranging from New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie to Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg and performer Justin Timberlake.
Meanwhile, the global craze, which was launched to raise awareness of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, has attracted widespread support across China.
As of last Friday, the challenge had raised more than 8.5 million yuan ($1.38 million) for the China-Dolls Center for Rare Disorders, a nonprofit organization. The center received only 2 million yuan in the whole of last year. Participants are asked to either drench themselves in ice water or donate to ALS research.
However, the Hong Kong Medical Association says the Ice Bucket Challenge could have serious consequences for participants from vulnerable groups, including the elderly, expectant mothers, people with heart conditions and those suffering from high blood pressure.
Moreover, with the ice bucket challenge trending across China, people in a severe drought-hit area in Central China's Henan province stood out against the mania with empty buckets and containers, shouting “We want water” in front of a statue of Buddha. Henan is experiencing its worst drought since 1951.
Protesters asked people to use sensible means to help patients of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). The Ice Bucket Challenge was initiated to raise funds for ALS research.