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Ice Bucket Challenge donations exceed $50 million

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has taken over the internet. Whether you are tired of seeing these viral videos or not, there is no argument that this silly gesture caught on film has raised an enormous amount of money for the ALS Association and also made this debilitating condition a household name. According to NBC News on Friday, the huge popularity of the Ice Bucket Challenge has raised over $50 million for the ALS Association in just a few short weeks.

Participants tip buckets of ice water over their heads as they take part in the World Record Ice Bucket Challenge at Etihad Stadium on August 22, 2014 in Melbourne, Australia. Over 700 people took part in setting the new world record. The Ice Bucket Chall
Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images

For those who may have missed it, the idea of the Ice Bucket Challenge once nominated is to either donate a larger amount of money and pass on the challenge part or to donate a smaller amount and post a video of yourself getting a large bucket of ice water dumped over your head. The challenge has become so incredibly popular that many celebrities have taken the challenge and then taken to nominating their celebrity friends.

To put the power of the Ice Bucket Challenge into perspective, consider that at this time last year, the ALS Association had raised around $2 million. This year, the challenge is still rolling strong with stars like Oprah, Jimmy Fallon, Justin Timerlake and way more taking part. So far over $50 million has been raised and the viral video challenge is still on a roll with new celebrities and everyday people posting their own videos and nominating more of their friends.

Money raised benefits research into the treatment and cure for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) which is also known as Lou Gehrig's disease. It is a neurodegenerative disease that in which the nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord are affected. This horrific disease affects voluntary muscle movement and can lead to paralysis and death.

The amount of attention that the Ice Bucket Challenge has brought to the ALS Association is astounding. Many hope that even after the fun of the challenge fizzles out, the media buzz created will help to bring in even more donations for future research and treatment. Those interested in learning more about ALS and making a donation can read more at the website for the ALS Association.