You don't need ice or a bucket to take part in the latest charitable challenge gone viral. The only prerequisite is a desire to help families of fallen men and women in uniform.
And some upper-body strength.
The #DropAndGiveMe10 challenge is heating up online, asking participants to both complete 10 pushups on camera and donate a chosen amount for each pushup toward the Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation. Those who complete the feat are encouraged to challenge three others to do the same.
What started as a small grassroots effort before Memorial Day took off once TV personality Bear Grylls of "Man vs. Wild" completed the challenge on May 23, Cynthia Kim, the foundation's co-founder, told The Huffington Post in an email. Grylls passed the challenge on to the "Today" show's Kathie Lee Gifford, actor Jesse Tyler Ferguson and NFL athlete Drew Brees.
Star power began getting the word out on the campaign as well as the foundation, which funds college scholarships for military children who've lost a parent in the line of duty. Gifford and Brees completed the task, along with a growing list of other celebs who'd been nominated, including Andy Cohen and Matt Lauer.
"We’ve been blown away by the reaction," Kim told HuffPost, noting other media personalities like Jimmy Fallon, Meredith Vieira and Bill O’Reilly have been challenged. The videos have garnered millions of page views. "It is overwhelming to see the support for our mission through the pushup challenge and to know that so many of 'our kids' will be supported."
Scroll to see some of the celebrity #DropAndGiveMe10 videos below.
I'm doing the #DropAndGiveMe10 pushup challenge - I nominate Kathie Lee Gifford Drew Brees & Jesse Tyler Ferguson
Posted by Bear Grylls on Saturday, May 23, 2015
— Andy Cohen (@Andy) May 30, 2015
Bear Grylls nominated Drew Brees for the #DropAndGiveMe10 challenge - and he, along with his kids, accepted!
Posted by New Orleans Saints on Friday, May 29, 2015
The Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation, which allocates funding for families of service members across all branches of the military, has provided more than $9 million in educational opportunities since its founding in 2002, according to Kim.
Kim started the foundation with her husband, David -- a U.S. Army veteran -- as a way to honor a young soldier in David's unit who was killed in Panama in 1989. The soldier had been expecting a baby daughter, Kim told HuffPost. David's concern for the fallen soldier's family inspired him to launch the foundation years later.
The nonprofit fills a vital void in assisting such students in need, its website notes. Many aid groups, for example, only target specific military branches or units, and a lack of a centralized directory of organizations makes it difficult for families seeking financial help to find answers.
Funds raised through the challenge will help the foundation further bridge the gap between beneficial resources and the those who need them -- a group of kids very worthy of the foundation's help, according to Kim.
"Service, giving back, and selflessness is in their blood," Kim explained to HuffPost of the children who benefit from the foundation, mentioning many of them are reluctant to accept financial help because they believe there are others who need it more than they do. "Their spirit of self-reliance and concern for others is so inspiring and it’s [a] testament to the values of their parents and all the men and women who serve in uniform."
To learn more about the #DropAndGiveMe10 challenge, visit the campaign's website here.
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