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The world lost an icon with the death of actress and animal activist Betty White on Dec. 31, 2021. The Emmy-winning star was 99 years old, just a few weeks before her 100th birthday, on Jan. 17, 2022. Now, in true 21st century fashion, White’s fans have come up with a heartwarming online movement in her memory that is going viral.
While the world is depressed that the ageless dynamo, who starred in classic shows such as “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” and “The Golden Girls,” didn’t reach that triple-digit figure, fans still plan to celebrate her birthday. A one-day event hosted by Fathom Events in movie theaters nationwide is still scheduled for Jan. 17, featuring a feature-length documentary about White.
While many mourners are keen to celebrate White’s work on the screen, some are trying to use the occasion of her death to remember the tireless work she did for animals.
That’s where the Betty White Challenge emerged and quickly started going viral as people searched for ways to honor White’s memory. Like other viral challenges of the past, such as the Ice Bucket Challenge, the Betty White Challenge requires people to do something simple to help raise awareness for a good cause.
To participate in the Betty White Challenge, all you has to do is take some time to research a local pet rescue or animal shelter and commit to donating $5 to it in White’s name on Jan. 17. Countless social media posts with #BettyWhiteChallenge have popped up in the days since her death, including this one posted by former NBA player Rex Chapman, who has a massive following on Twitter.
The Betty White Challenge. January 17th. #BettyWhiteChallenge
Please pass it on… pic.twitter.com/itufEumDE9
— Rex Chapman (@RexChapman) January 3, 2022
White’s fans hope that the challenge will start a movement to provide animals shelters and rescue agencies a wave of funding to begin the new year.
“Wouldn’t it be great if on 1/17/22 animal shelters were flooded with $ in Betty White’s name?” posted Twitter user Kristen Elle. “What a way to honor her 100th Bday!”
During her life, White worked to help rescue animals, supported animal shelters and served on numerous organizations committed to promoting animal welfare, including working with the Los Angeles Zoo for more than half of her life.