Well, like many other American's I have seen many of my friends throwing buckets of water over their heads on Facebook. I didn't pay much attention until my sweet little Goddaughter Molly challenged me to "the challenge."
I am thrilled to learn that the "gimmick" has worked? The New York Times reports that over $41 million dollars has been donated to ALS research since "the challenge" began a couple of weeks ago. If you would like to give the ALS Association (www.ALSA.org) is a great place to donate.
Rather than throwing water over my head to avoid writing a check I thought I would write the check, pour a bucket of ice water over my head and somehow come up with some ways of helping to continue raising awareness.
Awareness. Over the past several years I have read three fantastic books that have given me a better understanding of what ALS patients go through and the heart break their loved ones suffer on a daily basis. I highly recommend each one:
- Tales from the Bed by Jennifer Estes (the book that first introduced me to ALS)
- His Brother's Keeper - Be sure to check out Jamie Heywood's Ted talk, as well at http://bit.ly/1s7kwe5)
- Tuesday's with Morrie written by Detroit's own Mitch Albom (made into a motion picture, as well)
Local Action. Locally based Ann Arbor Active Against ALS (www.activeagainstals.org) is a Michigan based non-profit that donates funds to research labs that use the money directly and immediately for cure-driven research. Their donations go to:
- ALS Therapy Development Institute
- University of Michigan's Program for Neurology Research
- The Robert Packard Center for ALS Research at John's Hopkins
- Ozdinier Laboratory at Northwestern University
Shout Out. Amazing research is being done right here in the Mitten! Dr. Eva Feldman M.D. Ph.D. from the University of Michigan. She is brilliant and is making great strides in her quest to find a cure and treatments for ALS. See her recent interview on PBS here: http://bit.ly/1rnPZgC