In 2001 Lincoln began experiencing vision loss. And with that came feelings of anger, denial, grief and loss.
In 2006, Lincoln connected with The Canadian National Institute for the Blind (CNIB). “CNIB showed me the assisted technology for people with vision loss and that’s how I got started and that’s when I decided to work towards something.” In 2007 CNIB suggested that Lincoln enroll in NorQuest College, working towards a degree in social work. He started listening to books on tape and learned Braille. “That’s when I got involved with the United Way public speaking and I really got on to the idea of helping people and telling my story. People would shake my hand and tell me I am very inspirational so that helped build my confidence and from there, I flourished.”
You can help people like Lincoln
Lincoln is a natural helper and speaks about how much more comfortable he is in his skin now as a social worker than when he was a rig hand. “I do speaking for the United Way because one of the reasons I'm here is because of the supports that were available to me. CNIB showed me what I could do.”
Lincoln gives back by working with aboriginal counselling services where the majority of participants are aboriginal. “They can relate to me and I can relate to having to overcome obstacles, so when they hear my story it allows them to see how I’ve changed and makes them think that they can change too. It shows them that we have troubles in life, but we can get through them.”
“I believe this is where I’m supposed to be now, as a social worker helping people,” Lincoln says. “I’m a completely different person than I was — I feel now that I can have a conversation with anyone. Everything has lead me up until this point.”