Supporting the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

More than 30 staff at the Abbotsford News completed the Ice Bucket Challenge on Thursday to raise funds for the ALS Society of B.C.

Publisher Andrew Franklin and his staff were joined by Shirley Wilson, vice-chair of the Abbotsford board of education, and Allan Asaph, executive director of the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce.

The News' participation was part of a world-wide social-media phenomenon that has involved participants dumping buckets of ice water on their heads to raise awareness and funds for ALS – a progressive neurodegenerative condition more commonly known as Lou Gehrig's Disease – and posting the videos online, while challenging others to take part.

The cause has special meaning to News' staff, as former employee Rhonda Graw has the disease.

Graw was on hand as News' staff took the challenge.

"I think it's wonderful," Graw said. "When I heard from Andrew (Franklin) . . . I couldn't believe it. He asked me if I'd come down, and of course, I wouldn't miss it."

Graw is a huge fan of the Ice Bucket Challenge, which is drawing crucial awareness and funds for research.

As of Friday (Aug. 22), the initiative had raised $53.3 million in the U.S., compared to $2.2 million during the same period last year (July 29 to Aug. 21).

Last year, ALS Canada set its fundraising goal for the year at $10,000. This year, it has set its goal at $3 million, after having raised $2.3 million as of Friday.

"Nobody knows what ALS is," Graw said. "So with this Ice Bucket Challenge going viral, it's bringing awareness. And hopefully with awareness comes money, and with money comes a cure. Because right now, they don't know what causes it, there's no treatment, and there's no cure. You just have it.

"This is bringing it to the forefront."

For more information or to make a donation, visit

Here are a few other Ice-Bucket challenges that have also been accomplished:

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.

You might like ...

Victim's mom wants Robert Pickton charged
Deadly dog walker sent to jail
Deportation order for Abbotsford family made without full information
Osprey nest moved away from power pole
Auto crime on the rise in 2015
Hemlock Ski Team races to medals at Apex and Whistler
Plastic barrier testing begins to shield Metro Vancouver bus drivers
Fraser Health plans two-month bump in surgeries and scans
North Burnaby protest camps dismantled

Community Events, January 2015

Add an Event

Read the latest eEdition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Jan 28 edition online now. Browse the archives.