PETERBOROUGH-A day after moving to Peterborough, 50 year old Lynda Todd had a lightbulb moment.
“I had never been on the bus system, I really wanted to go but of course I was scared to go,” Todd told Kawartha 411. “Getting on the bus for the first time I thought you know, what’s the worst thing that could happen, I could end up over on Chemong and I don’t make it on time.”
Todd was born legally blind. She grew up in Millbrook and was used to getting around without a cane or much help from others because she knew the landscape. But a day after moving to Peterborough in February everything changed. Todd took the bus to an Archery class at Saugeen Shafts for people with low vision. She made it to the session but what happened after the class changed her life. “I literally tripped over the intersection medium and fell very very hard in the middle of the intersection so that was huge turning point for me,” Says Todd
Todd says that moment taught her she had been in denial about just how bad her vision was and that she needed help. “Being in Peterborough with low vision is dangerous” she says. “That specific moment changed everything for me so I signed up for several months of training.”
Training with the Canadian National Institute for the Blind. (CNIB) Todd signed up for several months of cane training. “I needed to learn how to get around in Peterborough,” Todd told Kawartha 411. “You have to learn how to read traffic, you can’t see the cross walk sign, if you have general routes you are going to do you need to learn the side walks and the curbs, the different heights etc.” And re-gain her independence.
The ordeal prompted her to sign up the the CNIB Night Steps fundraiser coming up on September 16th in Peterborough. “This is a way for me to give back, I didnt want to have to rely on a guide to be with me and I wanted to be able to get to a lot of different areas and do a lot of different things on my own.” she recalls. “CNIB was able to provide me with all of that training and it’s a free service.”
Night Steps is a fun and easy fundraising walk under the stars. It’s billed as a glow-in-the-dark celebration to help CNIB brighten the night. Fundraising efforts will provide life-changing support for people with sight loss in the community.
CNIB is entirely dependent on charitable funding to provide programs and services that complement and enhance rehab services. These programs address the social and emotional needs of people dealing with sight loss. They are aimed at helping build confidence and self-advocacy skills to ensure they receive the accommodations they need to succeed.
Todd is taking part and raising money to help the charity that helped her. But she says it about more than money. ” The training provides a whole new level of independence and improves your self esteem. It’s about raising money and awareness.”
Participants will have the opportunity to experience what it’s like to have low vision by using low vision goggles or being blind folded.
Taking part in CNIB Night Steps is easy! There is still time to register. They are asking each participant to raise at least $100 in honour of their 100th birthday. If walking isn’t for you, you can pledge a walker or volunteer in the community.
The event takes place on Friday September 15th. Registration is at 5:30 pm and the walk starts at 7:30 with activities planned afterward at Nicholls Oval, 725 Armour Road, Peterborough.
Click here for more information or to support Lynda:https://l.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fcannib.convio.net%2Fgoto%2FLyndaTodd&h=ATPDSOpiHdVAa7wCFiqaxy5Y8fk_xki76YHvUUGon5yZWUZ0rytKie3GEwahk482HJJSwBTpda7bsE-0Yx1L_Ypty1Udajy0RE1hg4dnKlL8txRPIkTXy7LLdzDc0t1dOyREeoSWIzPGGIMS6GA