Shoshana Litvack

Shoshana Litvack

EDITORIAL: Inspiring effort by Shoshana Litvack

The South Surrey mother of two proved that determination is at the root of making a difference.

Whether it’s from her commitment to personal health, her drive to give back – or her undeniable ability to overcome challenges – we could all learn something from Shoshana Litvack.

The 47-year-old South Surrey mother of two met her goal of running five kilometres a day for the duration of last year. A daunting task for many, she accomplished it despite being legally blind.

All too often, we tend to get caught up in the daily chores that make it difficult to take care of ourselves, our community. Our challenges are common; raising children, making dinner, cleaning the house, working long hours, or keeping up with recreational activities.

To Litvack, those are just among the obstacles in a life-long marathon of proving that anything is possible, as long as there’s determination. It’s a powerful, courageous and inspiring trait, and she serves as shining example of how one person can truly make a difference.

Litvack planned only on raising a modest $500, through the course of the year, for a charity of her choice. But as days passed, individuals and businesses started to take note of Litvack’s determination. By year’s end, she had collected more than $9,000.

Her commitment may be on a smaller scale, but it’s akin to the spirit of Canadian icon Terry Fox.

Single-handedly making a difference seems like an improbable undertaking. But, the reality is, as Fox showed us, that once an individual commits to something and shows a certain level of drive, it gains momentum. While he’s an extreme example of this philosophy, we should be grateful his accomplishments are still taught in school.

Fox had the ambitious goal of raising one dollar for every Canadian. At the time, there were 24 million people living in the country.

People paid little attention to him for the first half of his Marathon of Hope. He had to run – on one good leg and an artificial limb – from Newfoundland to Ontario, a distance more than 2,500 kilometres, before becoming a national star.

Canadians finally caught on. There’s no doubt his unshakeable determination was the reason he became a household name.

To date, more than $650 million has been raised worldwide for cancer research in Fox’s name.

Fox and Litvack have more in common than one might expect. Yes, they’re linked by some type of disability, but that’s not the most binding similarity.

Their greatest parallel is the ability to not let anything get in their way. They prove, for all of us, that determination is at the root of making a difference.