CNIB recognizes 50-year volunteer

Saanich woman offers more than five decades of time

Lily Walls

When Lily Walls started volunteering, the CNIB was still called the Canadian National Institute for the Blind. In the 50-plus years since then much has changed, from shortening the title officially to CNIB in 2006 to the disappearance of residences for the blind run by the non-profit.

The Saanich woman started her volunteering career in 1955 when she registered her visually impaired son Donald with the CNIB in Ottawa. Her volunteering spanned the country, as well as decades, as the family moved back and forth across Canada over the years.

Don recalls the impact his mom had on people throughout her volunteer work. Once she taught the hand alphabet to doctors and nurses, making the medical process less terrifying for their deaf and blind patients. He remembers a woman miserable with her failing sight feeling success and pride in the dishcloths Lily taught her to knit to near perfection.

“I used to drive a lot,” she said with a smile. “I’m letting other people drive me now.”

Over the years she was in the ladies auxiliary, served as the volunteer coordinator and on the board, among other duties. Walls was awarded for 52 years of volunteer service in 2008, and still attends the annual general meeting with her husband Gerry.

This year she’s being honoured with the CNIB Arthur Napier Magill Distinguished Service Award – the organization’s highest public recognition for volunteer services.

“When you have the knowledge, you like to pass it on because a lot of people need help,” Lily said. “It’s a help sometimes just to know where to go for help.”

Lily Walls’ work will be celebrated Sept. 5 with tea and ceremony at the CNIB office, 2340 Richmond Rd.

Just Posted

Clash of protesters seen in Alberta unlikely to occur in Greater Victoria

Here, those who disagree may voice their opposition, ‘but not to the degree of the issue in Edmonton’

Sewage treatment plant in Esquimalt sees rising costs

A staff report to the CRD shows rising costs for wastewater treatment project

Worried about bats? Here’s what to do if you come across one in B.C.

Bat expert with the BC Community Bat Program urges caution around the small creatures

Vancouver Island mom says she will go to court overseas to try to get daughter back

Tasha Brown says her estranged wife abducted their daughter Kaydance Etchells in 2016

VIDEO: Dashcam video captures moment Victoria cyclist struck

Police seeking cyclist captured in video

Anglican Church to review governance structure after same-sex marriage change fails

Some say the current system to change doctrine gives too much voting power to a smaller class of bishops

B.C. adding fast-charge stations for electric highway trips

Okanagan, Vancouver Island, Kootenay stations ready for use

15-year-old with imitation gun caused ‘dynamic’ scene at Nanaimo mall

No one was harmed in Monday’s incident, say Nanaimo RCMP

B.C. on right road with tougher ride-hailing driver rules, says expert

The provincial government is holding firm that ride-hailing drivers have a Class 4 licence

RCMP investigating alleged ‘sexual misconduct’ by cyclist on BCIT campus

BCIT said they were reviewing video evidence of the incident

New home cost dips in B.C.’s large urban centres

Victoria, Kelowna, Vancouver prices decline from last year

Graphic suicide scene edited out of ‘13 Reasons Why’ finale

Suicide prevention groups support the decision

Nine kittens and cats rescued after being locked in bins in northern B.C.: SPCA

SPCA says cats were starving, and matted with feces and urine

Most Read