Katy Perry, Usain Bolt and Bill Gates have all done it. Even Lionel Messi has faced the ice. Joining the ranks of ice bucketers around the world, Y’s Matt Blackwell took the plunge this week to do his bit to raise awareness for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), also known as Motor Neurone Disease.
Inspired by our damp friends in Dubai, Y’s ice bucket challenge was conducted in an environmentally friendly manner – bearing in mind the scarcity of water in some places in the world – and we used seawater from Seeb Beach.
According to a slightly soggy Matt: “It was a shock at first, but after that it was quite refreshing.” At 37°C outside, it probably was quite a nice change to feel cold for once in Oman.
“I think it’s really united people all over the world and feel that the money that’s donated outweighs the negatives,” added Matt.
Despite controversy, the ice bucket challenge has raised more than $100 million for ALS America and nearly £4 million in the UK. What’s more, it has inspired people to donate to charities in general. WaterAid UK witnessed a spike in donations this August, as did charities such as Macmillan Cancer Support.
“Like a lot of people, my family has been affected by cancer. I chose to donate to a cancer charity because it’s something close to my heart,” said Matt.
To watch Matt get a super soaking, check out the Y Facebook page, where we’ve shared his video. His nominations included Y Deputy Editor Kate Ginn and friends back home in the UK. So keep your eyes peeled and follow us on Facebook for any ice bucket updates!
* Try, try and fail. For all their best efforts and intentions some people just didn’t rise to the challenge. Check out some of the internet’s best fail compilations using the hashtag #IceBucketFail to search social media, or just type it into Google or YouTube. For more laughs, the “22 People Who Should Definitely Not Have Taken The Ice Bucket Challenge” on Buzzfeed is worth a read.
* India’s Rice Bucket initiative is another take on the challenge where, rather than dumping ice (or rice) over your head, nominees donate a bag of rice. Check out the Rice Bucket Challenge Facebook page for details. Even better, donate food, clothing or money to local charities such as Dar Al Atta’a.