The ice bucket challenge fundraiser for ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease, has already been a massive success despite some controversies. It's raised more than $94 million for the cause and supplied almost endless entertainment for the rest of us.
So, it makes sense that other good causes may want to piggyback off the disease's lingering moment in the spotlight. Most recently, actor Matt Damon dumped a bucket of toilet water over his head to point out the lack of clean water afforded to many developing nations as he promoted ALS awareness. Take a look at some of the other ice bucket challenge spinoffs below.
1. The Trash Bucket Challenge for the Environment
Kahi Pacarro, executive director for Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii, posted the video below on Aug. 20 in response to the ice bucket challenge hype. He asks individuals to go outside and fill a bucket with litter, then film themselves disposing of it in a proper receptacle. The goal, Pacarro told local news, is less about raising money than raising environmental awareness.
"If we raise a few bucks, great," he told Hawaii News Now. "But more importantly, if we can get hundreds, if not thousands, of people to go out to their local beaches, parks or even the streets to clean up a bucket, they'll see the same things they use in their everyday lives" -- which later ends up as litter. A Facebook page for the trash bucket challenge has garnered more than 700 likes and a handful of videos in a few days.
2. The Rice Bucket Challenge for Global Hunger
Manju Latha Kalanidhi started her own twist on the ALS fundraiser after deciding the ice bucket challenge seemed like a "preposterous" thing to do in India. The country's supply of clean, safe water is scarce. But perhaps even more problematic, is its number of malnourished residents -- one quarter of all the world's undernourished people live in India, according to the World Food Program.
Thus, Kalanidhi began the rice bucket challenge, billed as a "Desi challenge for Desi needs." Participants are encouraged to share pictures or video of themselves giving rice to people who need it, and those living abroad are taking part by donating to Indian charities such as Akshaya Patra Foundation, too.
3. The Sand Bucket Challenge for the Water Shortage Issue
It's a well-known fact that Californians are worried about their water supply. The state's drought this summer has been one of its worst on record, leaving residents with an ice bucket challenge dilemma: waste a bucket's worth of ice water and face a fine, or forgo participating in the biggest social media event of the year. (Of course, they could just donate the money anyway.)
In response, some have challenged each other to a "California-style" ice bucket challenge, like the one shown below. The rules are the same, except participants instead use a bucket of sand to bring attention to both ALS and the state's troubling drought. We imagine Californians' awareness to be even more intense than the rest of ours, as they'll surely be finding sand in places it doesn't belong for days.
4. The Rubble Bucket Challenge for Palestinians and the Hummus Not Hamas Challenge for Israelis
Gaza supporters' spin on the ice bucket challenge aims to draw attention to the hazardous living conditions endured during the turmoil of the last couple months. With fresh water being severely limited and residents' lives upended by the current crisis and Israeli airstrikes, many people are choosing to fill their buckets with gravel and sand for better awareness. At least 17,000 homes have been destroyed thus far in Gaza, and more than 2,000 Palestinians have been killed. University student Maysam Yusef started the challenge with a Facebook page, which now has several thousand likes.
Alternatively, the pro-Israel organization StandWithUs has begun its own challenge, dubbed Hummus Not Hamas. Participants are encouraged to donate to pro-Israel organizations and show their support for Israel and the Israeli Defense Force over social media, or else smear hummus on their faces. "Hamas are extremely crazy," one StandWithUs member told Jewish Journal, "but hummus is extremely tasty."
5. The Taco or Beer Challenge for Reproductive Rights
Texan journalist Andrea Grimes did the same as countless others when she heard about the Ice Bucket Challenge -- she made fun of it on Twitter.
I hereby challenge y’all to eat a taco or drink a beer and give money to an abortion fund #tacoorbeerchallenge
— Andrea Grimes (@andreagrimes) August 18, 2014
And now her joke is starting to actually take off. On Sept. 1, all but six abortion clinics will close in Grimes' home state, cutting abortion access for an estimated 22,000 women. As she explained to local news, the idea is to do something easy, like indulging in delicious tacos and beer, and then something that she says is hard for many people -- donating to an abortion fund.
"Why not give people something awesome to do instead of something really unpleasant," she told the Dallas Observer. "And why not tie it to a cause that is, sadly, unfairly maligned and stigmatized?" A Tumblr page started on behalf of the fledgling movement includes details on how to donate.
6. The Bullet Bucket Challenge for Civil Rights
Actor Orlando Jones' spin on the fundraiser came in the wake of demonstrations in Ferguson, Missouri, after an unarmed black teenager was fatally shot by a police officer. The event sparked more than a week of protests and a national conversation about race in present-day America. According to Jones, however, there hasn't been enough talk about civil and human rights.
By dumping a bucket full of bullets (*ouch*) onto his head, Jones said he hoped to raise awareness for another "disease" affecting Americans -- apathy.
"I'm challenging myself to listen without prejudice, to love without limits and to reverse the hate," Jones says in the video, encouraging others to take up the challenge for themselves.
Bonus! The Mice Bucket Challenge for the Lulz
And ALS. Awww.
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