I’ll admit, I’ve often stopped myself on the way to a goal or dream because I’ve thought, “How can I possibly do this on my own?” Last week, two people opened my eyes to what you can do when you set your mind to it.

Mary-Eleanor Walker decided one day over tea with a friend that she was going trek Mount Everest in Nepal. She was inspired by the story her friend shared from a Joints in Motion marathon experience and decided she would raise $10,000 for arthritis.

A novice trekker, Walker knew she needed to do it for her grandma, who suffered from arthritis and was a source of inspiration for her.


Walker decided to take a unique approach to fundraising. She rounded up her mom, grandmother and sister, and the foursome started crocheting her way to Everest. She’s raised nearly $6,000 from the sale of Cozy Cappers.

The $15 handmade customizable hat is not only bringing her family closer together but also raising money for a cause that is important in their lives. Her hats are available by joining the Facebook group, “I am a supporter of Future Everest Trekker — Mary-E!”

Jeff Maldaver is a 23-year cancer survivor. His encounter with cancer changed the way he lived. It opened his eyes to new people and new ideas that were sprouting in Halifax alongside the rest of the world — from macrobiotics to alternative therapies — ways that we can help our bodies heal from cancer and avoid it. When he learned about preventcancernow.ca, it resonated with him. A group whose mission was to help Canadians live their lives in ways that would help avoid some of the most preventable cancers.

Maldaver teamed up with medicinal herbalist Savayda Jarone in bringing the fourth annual Cancer Prevention Series to life in Halifax. The series is held at the Westin Hotel every Tuesday from now to April 27 at 7 p.m. Each practical and informative session is unique from the next and is lead by a series of health professionals and environmental advocates. Having attended last week, I can assure you that it will change your life and if you take action, may even save it.

Both Walker and Maldaver are two of many examples of people in our own community that are working hard to make a difference for someone else. It’s amazing what you can do when you set your mind to it. Inspired yet? I know I am.

Christina Carew is a member of FUSION Halifax. Visit FUSIONHalifax.ca to find out how you can get involved to help make Halifax a better place to live, work and play.

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