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

Study moves Oak Bay closer to contraceptive control for problem deer

The report says between 78 and 128 black tail deer live in the affluent beach-side community

Two missing Victoria children found safe

VicPD responded to two separate missing children calls Tuesday

Chim Chim Cher‑ee! Mary Poppins is coming to Oak Bay High

Mary Poppins opens Friday, Feb. 22, at the Dave Dunnet theatre

Crews repair damage after Tuesday night water main break in Langford

Flooding resulted in property damage, forced evacuation from Langford homes

Saanich amalgamation committee holds first meeting

Saanich councillors call for a transparent process to ensure success of study

‘Riya was a dreamer’: Mother of slain 11-year-old Ontario girl heartbroken

Her father, Roopesh Rajkumar, 41, was arrested some 130 kilometres away

Greater Victoria Wanted List for the week of Feb. 19

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

B.C. Seniors Advocate questions labour shortage in care homes

Are there really no workers, or are care aide wages too low?

B.C. business groups worry about looming economic decline in wake of NDP budget

The party’s second government budget focused on plenty of spending, business advocates say

Man injured in police shooting near Nelson has died: B.C. police watchdog

The death follows an incident in Bonnington on Feb. 13

Experts urge caution after 10 human-triggered avalanches across B.C.

One man is still stuck after avalanche on south coast

Police seize bottles of grapefruit vodka from wanted man’s snow-pants

The men were pushing two shopping carts with a woman inside

Tonight’s sporting event costs more than the Super Bowl, and Obama is going

Tickets are going for more than $4,000 to watch the Duke - North Carolina basketball game

CRTC report finds ‘misleading, aggressive’ sales tactics used by telecom industry

Report recommends measures to make a fairer situation for consumers

Most Read