Helping patients over a period of years gives us opportunities to learn about their unique interests and they often become engaged on a deeper level with CVI. Shannon Hill is one such individual who has a long history with CVI as a client, board member and donor. He recently shared some thoughts about this special bond.

You were a client. Can you tell me a bit about your diagnosis? When were you first diagnosed? How did you learn about CVI?

I was diagnosed with Stargardt’s disease when I was 10 years old.  As I started seeking treatment, my doctor told us about the services at CVI.  We had a consultation and began getting services shortly thereafter.

Why and when did you Shannon and Jamie Hillfirst become a donor to CVI? Why have you continued giving?

When my wife and I got to a point in our life where we could financially begin making charitable contributions, the first place I thought of was CVI.  We have been giving for more than 10 years and continue giving because CVI gave so much to us.  We hope our support helps CVI continue providing services to others with similar challenges to mine.

Why do you choose to support CVI as a monthly donor, rather than making one annual gift?

We give monthly just to make sure that our donation to CVI is as important in our budget as any other expense.  We also make lump sum contributions, but we never wanted to be in a situation where we had to choose.  So, setting up an automatic monthly contribution helps us stay disciplined and committed to our goal of giving.

You were also a member of the Board of Trustees. What perspective did you gain from your service? Has this influenced your decision to continue supporting CVI as a monthly donor?

Serving on the board at CVI was truly an honor. This was just another way for me to give back to an organization that gave so much to me.  Board service gave me such an up close perspective on the mission of the organization and the work and time that so many give to make CVI such a well-run organization.

What do you hope your gifts will achieve?

Growing up with visual challenges and then transitioning to adulthood seeking independence can be difficult. CVI provides support to people like me, and I am so thankful for that.  I hope our contributions will give CVI the ability to help those in need the same way it helped me.  I know there are some people out there that don’t know about CVI, so I really hope CVI continues to grow and reach more of those that are in need and don’t have resources.

What are your hopes for our clients?

I hope CVI clients can turn their challenges into triumphs. I hope they can find independence and achieve their goals and dreams. CVI’s mission aligns perfectly with this.

Can you share some details about yourself and Jamie (professions, interests, etc.) to give the readers a better idea of who you are?

I went to the University of Georgia and graduated in 2009. I began a career in financial planning and met my wife, Jamie, while working together. We started a financial planning practice and built a wonderful business together. We live in Midtown not far from CVI.  We are season ticket holders and supporters of UGA football, so the last few years have been a wonderful ride.

Is there anything you’d like to add?

Before we were able to give money to CVI, we gave our time. Jamie and I volunteered with the youth program for two years, and this was really a springboard for our other service. Jamie served on the Audit Committee for several years as well. I would encourage others to donate your time and if you have means, donate funds to support CVI. I can certainly testify that the tools and support I received as a child helped me tremendously as I navigated college, my career and built my life.

You can join Shannon and Jamie as recurring monthly donors here