Raising a cool $20,000 donation

Southerners braving buckets of icy water

LAUREN HAYES
Last updated 05:00 19/07/2014
ABC Childcare teacher Sonia Buckingham
JOHN HAWKINS/Fairfax NZ
ICE COLD: ABC Childcare teacher Sonia Buckingham feels the chill in a charity challenge.

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Southerners braving buckets of icy water have raised tens of thousands of dollars for charity.

Hundreds of Southlanders have taken part in the ice water challenge, a viral stunt where participants are drenched in freezing water and make a donation to charity.

Many have chosen to donate to the Cancer Society.

Cancer Society Otago Southland chief executive Mike Kernaghan said donations from challenges in the south so far raised about $20,000.

Nationally, he believed about $200,000 had been raised for the society, and people seemed to be getting behind the movement on social media, he said.

"People do understand it's for a darn good cause and so they take part."

The society was urging people to have fun, but to avoid mixing the challenge with alcohol, he said.

He also suggested those with health issues should think twice before doing it, to be safe.

Some health professionals had raised concerns about the challenge but, if done sensibly, it was just a bit of fun - similar to a mid-winter swim, Kernaghan said.

ABC Childcare centre and Waxy O'Shea's were two Invercargill businesses taking part in the ice water challenge yesterday.

Waxy O'Shea's duty manager Halie Sloan said 10 staff were preparing to undertake the stunt at the bar last night, to raise money for the Cancer Society.

Meanwhile, hordes of preschoolers cheered as five teachers did the challenge at the ABC Childcare centre yesterday.

Centre manager Ma Bradshaw said the centre had used the challenge to raise money for the Ronald McDonald House Family Room.

Almost everyone at the centre knew of family or friends who had used the service, or had used it themselves, she said.

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