I have always been fascinated by how the brain works, how people think and behave. I have studied motor development, psychology and I am accredited in a range of personality and behavioural tools. I have always wanted to make a difference in the work that I do, but never realised just how important these skills would become in my own life.
On Boxing Day of 2013 my then fiancé, Jeremie was rushed to hospital after waking up with an acute headache. A healthy young man with no signs or symptoms, he underwent numerous tests and scans before a CT scan found an abnormality on his brain. He was transferred to the Royal Melbourne Hospital where the decision was made to operate. In the days that followed we learnt that he had an oligoastrocytoma, a mixed cell brain tumour. His initial diagnosis was good - a low grade tumour that was operable.
As a soon-to-be married couple, our world was very quickly turned upside down. Trading our dream honeymoon for a bed at the hospital, we checked in for an awake craniotomy. At the time we thought this was the hardest thing we would ever have to face together.
It was always our belief that in some way our story would be the exception to the rule. That Jeremie would be one of the 20 per cent that survived and that together we would beat brain cancer. Devastatingly, we lost our beloved son and brother, best buddy, mate and adored husband, Jeremie in February 2016, but that didn't stop my determination or belief that together we can make a difference.
In 2015, we started raising money for the Royal Melbourne Hospital and I set out to raise $25,000 for the Foundation, to fund vital research into the causes and treatments of brain tumours. Through a range of personal challenges, including running in the Melbourne Marathon (half) and competing as the only female member of the PwC football team, my aim was to share our story and raise awareness for this debilitating disease, not by struggle and heartbreak but through determination, resilience, courage, purpose and most of all celebration.
My husband and I packed everything into life and made a choice that whilst we could not control what had happened, we could control how we responded to the challenge. We celebrated every step of the way and never lost sight of our belief that together there is nothing a person can't achieve if they put their mind to it.
Our fundraising initiative "Getting ahead of Brain Cancer" successfully raised $25,000 for the Royal Melbourne Hospital Neuroscience Foundation and I have no intention of stopping there. I’m about to launch my professional speaking website with fees donated to the foundation.
Like Sarah, many of our staff are passionate about making a difference and regularly find ways to exercise their influence through our paid volunteering opportunities, charity giving platform and self-driven initiatives. If you are passionate about creating real positive change, you can make it happen at PwC. See the roles we're currently hiring here.
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