Curaleaf brings back Pete Frates’ Ice Bucket Challenge to raise money for ALS

The cannabis company that partnered with Ice Bucket Challenge founder Pete Frates to raise awareness about the benefits of medical marijuana as he battled ALS is paying it forward by sponsoring an ice bucket challenge of its own this month.

a group of people on a stage: Staff members at Curaleaf dispensary in Provincetown, Massachusetts doused with Rainbow Pride colored water outside store. (Curaleaf)

© Provided by Boston Herald
Staff members at Curaleaf dispensary in Provincetown, Massachusetts doused with Rainbow Pride colored water outside store. (Curaleaf)

More than 200 employees at Curaleaf Holdings’ seven dispensaries in Massachusetts will take the icy plunge this month– August is Ice Bucket Challenge Month in Massachusetts — to help raise money for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, the degenerative neurological condition the former Boston College baseball captain was diagnosed with in 2012.

“We know how important Pete Frates was to the BC community and to the world,” said Curaleaf CEO Joe Lusardi. The challenge is the company’s way of keeping “Pete’s mission and memory alive,” Lusardi said.

Curaleaf is extending participation to its 3,100 employees nationwide “so we can one day end ALS,” said Lusardi, who like Frates is a Boston College graduate. The company will also make a corporate donation in support of a cure for ALS.

Frates used medicinal marijuana to treat severe anxiety and other medical conditions that came with his diagnosis. Frates partnered with Curaleaf to raise awareness in the ALS community about the benefits of medicinal cannabis treatment.

“We are grateful for all the support that Curaleaf has shown for our family,” Julie Frates, Pete Frates’ wife, said in a statement. “Pete understood the need for greater access to medical cannabis for thousands of ALS patients like him who continue to battle this horrific disease.”

Curaleaf Massachusetts President Patrik Jonsson said the challenge is a tribute to Pete and his family who “have made it their mission to help ALS patients and their families here in Massachusetts, across the country and around the globe.”

“Like our company, the Frates family remains focused on cultivating health and wellness and improving people’s lives through advocacy and education,” said Jonsson, also a Boston College graduate.

Frates lost his eight-year battle with ALS in 2019, but his legacy has lived on in the viral ice bucket challenge he inspired. The social media sensation has generated more than $220 million to fight the deadly disease and spread awareness of the rare condition throughout the world.

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