New Hope Cancer Survivor Launches “Do Positive”
How many times have you been out at a park, noticed some trash on the ground, and opted not to pick it up?
Or how about those times when you’ve seen someone down on their luck and chose to look the other way?
“People just walk by, walk by, walk by,” said Scott Whiteis, a New Hope native and graduate of Cooper High School.
Whiteis has a few ideas as to why people ignore the issues staring them right in the face.
“Time. Self-absorbed. Maybe not quite as in touch with ourselves as we think we are,” he said.
Now, Whiteis is on a mission to get people to change their way of thinking. It’s why he started a non-profit called, “Do Positive.”
“To me, it’s a way of living. It’s a way to approach your life,” Whiteis said.
The idea is to positively impact the world around you by doing something good every day. That good deed could be for a person, or it could be for the planet.
“If you do positive things, good things follow, right?” Whiteis said.
The Do Positive facebook page highlights inspiring news articles, and the Do Positive website showcases some of Whiteis’ initiatives, such as the Pillow Project, where he provides the homeless with new pillows and other sanitary items.
“While that may seem like a small thing, the amount of people I’ve run into where I’ve handed them a pillow and a little something extra, like here I’ve got a toothbrush and toothpaste, the response has been overwhelmingly positive,” Whiteis said.
In a way, you can call the Do Positive movement Whiteis’ legacy project.
A Cancer Survivor
“What I’ve got is a completely crazy form of thyroid cancer. So that’s untreatable, there’s no known real treatment for it,” Whiteis said. “I’m dealing with basically five places in the country that have ideas. So there are things that are up in the air for me.”
Whiteis was first diagnosed in 2011 after he got into a minor car accident.
“I got rear-ended and I had to have an MRI to make sure I was not messed up,” he said. “And when I had the MRI they’re like, weird story, they’re like, ‘Yeah you’ve got a lump here.’
The news was hard at first, but he soon decided to change his mind-set. That’s how the Do Positive movement began.
“I’m a little sad that it took cancer to flip that switch,” Whiteis said.
With that in mind, he wants people to realize that they don’t need to wait until something bad happens to them before they show kindness to others.
“You can go ahead and do it right now, and I think you’ll be surprised at what it does for you and to you and to the people around you and for the world that you live in,” he said.
To date, Whiteis has raised several thousand dollars for his Do Positive initiatives, which include the Pillow Project, and a cancer relief fund, which will help other cancer patients pay for their expenses.
Update: On Friday, May 10, a group of family and friends held a fundraiser for Whiteis to help him pay for medical expenses. In total, they raised more than $16,000 thanks to donations and a variety of silent auction items.