From:The Straits Timesposted on 18 August at 10:05 PM
18 August at 10:05 PM

Celebrities dump a bucket of ice water over their heads in viral challenge - all for a good cause

Dousing yourself with a bucketful of freezing cold ice water might not be everyone's idea of fun, but the viral phenomenon dubbed the ALS Ice Bucket challenge has made it cool - literally - to do just that. 

But what has made the act such a popular one that everyone - from celebrities such as Oprah Winfrey to football superstar Cristiano Ronaldo - have been posting ice bucket challenge videos on their social media accounts? 

Well, it's a way to raise both money and awareness for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), or more commonly known as Lou Gehrig's disease, which afflicts nerve cells and eventually leads to total paralysis after contracting it. 

Here's how it works: people make a video of themselves being drenched, before challenging three other friends to repeat the act within the next 24 hours or donate $100 to the ALS Association

According to the New York Times, more than 1.2 million of such videos have been shared on Facebook between June 1 and Aug 13, while donations have peaked at US$13.3 million (S$16.6 million) since July 29 - compared to a mere US$1.7 million in the same period last year. 

What reportedly started as a golfers' challenge really took off when 29-year-old former college baseball player Pete Frates, who suffers from ASL, posted a video on Aug 1 challenging his friends to perform the act. It has since inspired some of the world's most well-known names to follow suit in support of the cause. 

Here's some of the more popular videos circulating around the Internet. 

1. Real Madrid footballer Cristiano Ronaldo 

Trust the Portuguese Peacock to do it in a pair of skimpy trunks

2. Guardians Of The Galaxy star Chris Pratt 

Starlord ropes in his mother and wife, actress Anna Faris, to help from the second floor.   

3. Microsoft founder Bill Gates
Because it's Bill Gates, he just had to design a contraption to perform the task for him. 

4. Singer Taylor Swift 

The more the merrier - Swift's glamarous image gets thrown out of the window as she gets soaked to the skin along with a group of people. 

5. Pop star Justin Bieber
Buckets aren't cool enough for Bieber, who uses what appears to be a pot instead. He then goes on to challenge - who else - US president Barack Obama.  

6. Iron Man Robert Downey Jr

No suit for Iron Man - he opts to go topless in a pool for the deed. 

7. TV host Oprah Winfrey

Sneak attack! 

Copyright 2014 Singapore Press Holdings Ltd. Co. Regn No. 198402868E. All rights reserved. Terms & Conditions