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Meet Our Volunteers

From the caring Canadians who work directly with our participants as Vision Mates, to those who answer the phones or organize events, volunteers are the lifeblood of the CNIB Foundation. Meet some of the amazing people who make up our volunteer team. 

To become a volunteer, complete this Volunteer Interest Form so we can get in touch with you!

Salim Kassam

Celebrating CNIB Volunteers: Meet Salim

Local Calgary resident Salim Kassam loves to give back to his community. In 2014 Salim was diagnosed with Ushers Syndrome, a genetic disease that affects both hearing and sight. It was then that he originally connected with CNIB for support – and quickly fell in love with the community and cause.
Alan Bridgeman

Celebrating CNIB Volunteers: Meet Alan

As a Tech-Mate, Alan volunteers his time to work one-on-one with participants in the British Columbia area who are interested in brushing up on their assistive and accessible technology skills.
Jessica Bailey, poses at the Lake Joe waterfront. She does the American Sign Language sign for "I Love you". An icon of a hand with a heart floating above it appears in the top right hand corner.

Celebrating CNIB Volunteers: Meet Jessica

CNIB Lake Joe is lucky to have long-time volunteers, but not many are like Jess Bailey. She has been volunteering at CNIB Lake Joe for most of her life!
National Youth Council

Celebrating CNIB Volunteers: The National Youth Council

Le Conseil national des jeunes d'INCA (CNJ) offre à ses membres la possibilité d'influencer le changement et d'accroître la sensibilisation aux questions auxquelles sont confrontés les jeunes Canadiens vivant avec une perte de vision.
Lynn Kennedy poses for a photo in front of a book shelf. A yellow graphic of hands holding a white heart outlined in black in the bottom left corner

Meet Lynn – Book Club Facilitator

Everyone loves a good page turner, including Lynn Kennedy, who wanted to share her love of reading with others. In 2020, she started volunteering as a book club facilitator.

“CNIB has been a great source of support for my son, and I’m very grateful,” says Lynn. “I’ve taken a keen interest in learning how CNIB helps people with sight loss and the various programs that are available.”
A photograph of Louise Burley smiling and holding a microphone in her left hand. A yellow graphic of hands holding a white heart outlined in black in the top right corner.

Meet Louise – Coffee Chat Facilitator

Louise became a CNIB volunteer in March 2020 to provide support for people who are blind or partially sighted during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“It was a time of great need and total isolation for all of us. I wanted to give back to my community as someone with sight loss,” says Louise. “Using the Zoom platform regularly provided us with a feeling of connection. It also boosted our confidence with using the technology.” 
A picture of Louis Levesque standing in front The Château Frontenac. A yellow graphic of hands holding a white heart outlined in black in the bottom left corner.

Meet Louis – Peer Support Group Facilitator

After losing his vision suddenly in 2011, Quebec City’s Louis Levesque began to volunteer as a peer support group facilitator.

“When I lost my vision, I could no longer do my job,” says Louis. “At 55, I was too young to be idle, so it seemed like a natural fit to help those who were facing the same challenges as me.”

With an incredible amount of empathy, Louis is committed to creating safe spaces that welcome the most difficult conversations related to sight loss.
A photo of Emer Ferguson smiling. A yellow graphic of hands holding a white heart outlined in black in the top right corner.

Meet Emer – Cooking Club Facilitator

Kitchener-Waterloo's Emer Ferguson volunteers as a cooking club facilitator. As someone with sight, she has learned a lot from people who are blind or partially sighted.

“Whether it’s using an Instant Pot, a slow cooker or setting aside more time for cooking, they’ve taught me that anything is possible in the kitchen,” says Emer.
Photo of Betty Nobel smiling. A yellow graphic of hands holding a white heart outlined in black in the top right corner.

Meet Betty – CNIB Tech Mate

As a CNIB Tech Mate, Vancouver’s Betty Nobel volunteers to help put the latest tech knowledge at people’s fingertips.

“People need to have hope that they can carry on living independent lives after losing their vision,” says Betty. “CNIB has played a big part in my journey to independence since birth, so I have always wanted to give back.”
Sandra, wearing a pink shirt, smiling for the camera in a group photo with other CNIB Lake Joe volunteers. A graphic of arms hugging a cartoon yellow heart can be seen in the top-right corner of the photo.

Meet Sandra

Sandra started volunteering with CNIB as a Vision Mate, a program that connects volunteers with participants for friendly conversations. The first time she heard about CNIB Lake Joe was during a peer support group in her hometown of Newmarket.