Lessons on giving

EFW Radiology 1st Annual Turkey Drive

 

The success of EFW Radiology’s first-ever Turkey Round-Up was driven by the generosity of the medical community and strangers.

We definitely hope to do it again. Giving back to the community is important to us, and the time we spent doing this was so inspiring.

When Dr. Houman Mahallati stepped into a turkey suit this past December as part of EFW Radiology’s 1st annual Turkey Round-Up, he was prepared for stares and questions. But he was taken by surprise by the generosity he encountered in unexpected places.

Turkey drive"On the first day, we went into a pub in northeast Calgary for lunch and had a few people do double-takes at the turkey costumes," he recalls with a laugh.

"We explained what we were doing, and a few minutes later our server handed us a $5 bill and said she wished she could give more. It just left me speechless."

That random act of generosity was the first of many encounters that both inspired and humbled Dr. Mahallati and his colleagues at EFW.

"We had people handing us cash in parking lots and waiting rooms," he marvels. "We told them they could get a tax receipt and they told us they didn’t care, they just wanted to give."

Turkey dinnerDuring one office visit, Dr. Mahallati met four-year-old-Jake who asked, wide-eyed, what they were doing.

"When I told him we were collecting money for people who didn’t have enough money for Christmas dinner, he tugged at his mom's arm and whispered 'Mom, can I have money for the turkey?' He then handed me $4 and said 'please help the families.' It was an incredible moment."

Although the Turkey Round-Up fell short of its $50,000 goal, it did raise more than $23,920 – most of it from donations made by Calgary's medical community.

"I was so amazed by the warmth and generosity of the medical community and really struck by how supportive they were of what we were doing."

In addition to donations, people also offered suggestions on how to make it easier to give – ideas that Dr. Mahallati and his EFW colleagues will explore before they slip on their turkey suits this coming December.

"We definitely hope to do it again. Giving back to the community is important to us, and the time we spent doing this was so inspiring."

More about this initiative

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