Challenging Youth to Join the Fight

The ALS Association is launching a campaign to engage kids and teenagers in the fight against ALS, issuing the ALS Youth Challenge and celebrating the first-ever ALS Youth Action Day.

Our chapters across the country will be partnering with youth organizations in their communities to identify future activists and philanthropists who will help to defeat ALS by accepting the ALS Youth Challenge.

On May 19, we will recognize the first annual ALS Youth Action Day, a day where kids can set aside time to take the ALS Youth Challenge, raise money and awareness for the fight against ALS, and spread the word on social media.

By hosting an iced tea stand, giving an ALS awareness speech, writing letters to Congress, taking a pie in the face, or just playing sports, participants in the ALS Youth Challenge will spread hope and inspire others to envision a world without ALS.

The ALS Youth Challenge can empower kids directly affected by ALS as well as recruit others into the fight.

Rebecca Wetzel, a teacher and philanthropist based in New Jersey, came up with the ALS Youth Challenge concept and worked with The ALS Association to develop it. She was inspired to do so by her own experience watching her grandfather battle ALS when she was six.

“I remember being confused and helpless,” she said. “I could not understand why my grandfather stopped being able to throw a ball with me, why he stopped being able to pick me up, and then, eventually, why he could not speak to me anymore.”

Rebecca and her family appeared on “Today” in May 2018 to discuss the ALS Iced Tea Challenge, which encourages kids to set up iced tea stands to raise awareness of ALS and fund for The ALS Association’s mission. The ALS Iced Tea Challenge is one of the concepts included in the ALS Youth Challenge. In 2018, Rebecca and her two daughters raised more than $30,000 for ALS research, care services, and advocacy through their iced tea stands.

The ALS Association agrees with Ellie Wetzel, age 4: "We believe kids are awesome and can do anything."

Show us what you can do and take the ALS Youth Challenge.

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