Donor Stories

Browning Harvey Limited

Thank you to the team at Browning Harvey Limited

Longtime supporters of CNIB, Browning Harvey Limited (BHL), have always felt a connection with our organization.

"We recognize the fine work done by CNIB," says Anna Patten, Community Relations for BHL, a Pepsi-Cola bottling company in St. John's, Newfoundland. "We have been moved each and every time a client speaks to the support they have received."

After reading an article about a Dining in the Dark dinner held in Montreal, the team at BHL knew they had to bring the event – which gives guests the experience of eating a meal without sight – to their hometown in St. John's.

"We thought this was a wonderful and fun way to support CNIB," says Patten. "We are helping educate sighted individuals about the daily challenges that those with vision loss face."

Since the first event a few years ago, the BHL Dining in the Dark fundraiser now takes place twice a year and is always sold out. With the event's proceeds, BHL are supporting CNIB's summer camp programs where kids of all ages can just be kids.

"It truly is a win-win experience!" says Patten.

Britton Smith

Thank you to longtime supporter Britton Smith

At 96 years young, World War II veteran Britton ("Brit") Smith has been a CNIB supporter for decades.

Aside from his connection to family friend and CNIB founder Col. Edwin A. Baker, Brit learned how challenging vision loss could be from some of his fellow soldiers. After he was injured on the battlefields of Normandy, he got to know many comrades who'd lost their sight in action.

"I was in the hospital for six months after I was wounded in the war," he says. "I remember we would go down to the local pub with some of the pilots who had lost their sight to help give them some exposure on how to manage now that they couldn't see anymore."

Seventy years later, Brit is still trying to be there for people who've lost their sight. As a long-time CNIB supporter, he's helped to fund many projects within his community of Kingston, Ontario, and throughout the province, to benefit blind and partially sighted people in his area.

Brit's generosity has also helped fund renovations at the CNIB Lake Joseph Centre, an all-ages camp for clients and their families, as well as to redevelop the teaching space at the CNIB Kingston location.

"It's important to help CNIB because, in my opinion, it is one of the highest profile charities that does great work," he says.

Marion Smith

When Marion Smith made a legacy gift for CNIB almost 20 years ago, she had no idea she'd end up needing the charity's help herself one day.

Having no children, Marion had decided to leave her estate to CNIB as a tribute to her late mother, who received support from the organization after losing her sight later in life.

Then, just like her mother, Marion lost her vision too.

Fortunately, Marion went to CNIB and learned to adapt to vision loss – with services like support groups, independence training and access to audio and braille books.

As for the gift she made in her will, Marion now knows firsthand what a difference it will make for CNIB's clients.

"There's a lot of people that need help from CNIB," she says. "What goes around comes around… and I hope more people will get involved in giving."

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