You know of at least one of your friends - or have done it yourself - that's taken part in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge that's taken the world and social media by storm.
The whole aim of the challenge is to raise funds for the ALS Association so it can fulfil its mission to “lead the way in global research, providing assistance for people with ALS through a nationwide network of chapters, coordinating multidisciplinary care through certified clinical care centers, and fostering government partnerships … while aggressively searching for new treatments and a cure”.
But as with anything that goes viral that involves money, there are sceptics…
And there are two aspects of this scepticism:
1. Many people take part but fail to donate - the whole point of the challenge; and
2. Where does the money donated ACTUALLY go to?
For the purpose of the article, we'll focus on point number 2 so you have an idea of where your hard-earned and thoughtfully donated money is going.
Because it seems that it's not all going to research!
In fact, you might just be paying for an ALS Association employees' company benefit!
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The ALS website is 'open' about where the donated money goes to
The ALS research group have received almost a billion rand since the ALS ice bucket challenge started.
But only 28% of this money will go into research to find a proper treatment and possible cure for the disease!
The rest of the pie chart explains how 19% goes to patient and community support, 32% is for education, 14% for raising funds and marketing and 7% is for admin costs.
sees something completely different on the company’s tax returns.
In fact, it appears that a whopping 50% of funds go to employee salaries, pensions and benefits.
Just as a matter of interest, the CEO of The Association earns over R 3,000,000 a year! Almost one sixth of what the website says the company puts into admin costs.
And while we’re not saying it’s a waste to donate money to a good cause like for the ice bucket challenge, it’s essential you think about what your money is for and where it goes before you do!