Aug. 17, 2022
North York hotel to become refugee shelter
“In the past, shelters sometimes exist like islands within our community,” she said. “We really need the community to be involved, and I think the only way that this could be successful is if the neighbourhood has meaningful opportunities to be part of how this unfolds and not just it landing in the neighbourhood without connectivity to the people who live here.”
Jun. 18, 2022
Reclaiming a neighbourhood after a horrifying attack - Fresh Air
Lily Cheng co-founded the neighbourhood group We Love Willowdale to help the community heal and re-claim their spaces after the 2018 Toronto Van attack. We find out about the community they've built since then.
Jun. 13, 2022
Two Toronto city council candidates initially endorsed by John Filion in 2018 election are set to face off in Willowdale
Cheng, who registered her candidacy Monday and was “leaning toward” a run whether or not Filion sought re-election, is now focused on persuading voters she should replace him Oct. 24.
“I want to increase citizenship engagement and help solve problems.”
Apr. 20, 2022
Veterans of Toronto’s upended 2018 civic election eye returning to the political fray
Lily Cheng, operator of the popular Facebook group North York Moms, started the 2018 election in a Willowdale ward endorsed by then-retiring Coun. John Filion. But she ended up finishing second to Filion when he changed plans after the council cut.
Jan. 17, 2022
North York Moms group founder Lily Cheng can put house 'back in order' with kids at school
“My husband and I both are working from home right now, and it’s been madness. Our home has been torn apart,” said Cheng, a Willowdale mother of two who runs a Facebook group called North York Moms, which has more than 10,000 members.
Nov. 4, 2021
'It's so sad, heartbreaking': Nurse paralyzed after Toronto van attack dies
“Her life was tragically stolen and drawn out. Really, it was a three-year death, which is, I think, far worse in some ways to have to endure that,” said Lily Cheng, co-founder of the community group named We Love Willowdale.
May 5, 2021
Toronto's single moms to be honoured for 'heroic efforts' during pandemic
More than 60 single moms will receive flowers, baked goods and pampering baskets to celebrate their “heroic efforts at solo parenting during the pandemic,” organizer Lily Cheng said.
Apr. 21, 2021
'Heartwarming' virtual dinner will commemorate Yonge Street tragedy
Lily Cheng, the executive director of both organizations, said community members still have “scars” from the horrific crime. “We carry this in our hearts,” she said. “We felt it would be very important for us to bring people together especially on this commemoration day so that those who are still carrying pain (and) difficult memories can share (their feelings) with their neighbours.”
Mar. 3, 2021
Victim's family, Willowdale residents express 'relief' in van attack verdict
Willowdale resident Lily Cheng, co-founder of We Love Willowdale (a grassroots movement started in response to the tragedy), said she’s relieved to know the perpetrator will be held responsible for his actions.
Jul. 15, 2020
Here’s how three new gardeners are growing their own groceries
No disrespect to front-lawn lovers, but Lily Cheng finds grass a waste of space. That’s why a large vegetable garden dominates the Willowdale resident’s front yard.
Now her family of four eats fresh greens every day, along with kale chips and lemon mint tea.
Apr. 22, 2019
One year after Toronto van attack, memorial events offer chance to pay tribute to victims
“Everyone gets busy in life but I remember a year ago when it happened, we had this awakening in our community of how important it is to reach out and care for each other,” said Lily Cheng, a community organizer and one of the people behind the We Love Willowdale group that is helping co-ordinate Tuesday’s commemoration events.
“We want to redeem that. We want to say those lives were not for nothing. We can do that by being a better community, by building even deeper connections within our community.”
Oct. 22, 2018
John Filion coasts to council in Ward 18, Willowdale
Runner-up Lily Cheng — who Filion had earlier endorsed, prior to his eleventh-hour decision to run — trailed in second place, with just under 20 per cent of votes.
Oct. 16, 2018
Oct. 11, 2018
In Willowdale, incumbent councillor faces challenge from candidate he once endorsed to replace him
“I am a mom, a woman and a minority — that perspective is not represented on council,” Cheng says in an interview at Yonge St. and Sheppard Ave. in the centre-north Ward 18, which is suffering strains from hyperdevelopment rivalling that in the city core.
Aug. 28, 2018
Meet the people challenging Premier Doug Ford’s Toronto ward cuts in court
Cheng, the daughter of Taiwanese parents, signed up to run in the 47-ward system in Ward 29, a newly created North York district with no incumbent. The community organizer and mother of two young children decided to put her name on the ballot after the van attack on Yonge St. led her to speak at a vigil encouraging others to give back to their community. She felt she should do the same.
Jul. 24, 2018
The importance of empowering a community dealing with tragedy
The Danforth mass shooting brings back painful memories of the North York van attack. BT"s Melanie Ng speaks with Lily Cheng, co-founder of We Love Willowdale about the importance of empowering a community dealing with tragedy.
Jun. 3, 2018
'They are now a part of us': Makeshift memorial for Toronto van attack victims comes down
"Here we see evidence of deep sorrow, deep grief and deep love," said Lily Cheng, co-founder of community group We Love Willowdale.
May 20, 2018
Picnic will celebrate a neighbourhood that’s still shaken by van attack
We Love Willowdale co-founder Lily Cheng said she knows people who have been avoiding Yonge St. since the attack.
“We want to do something that fosters a sense of safety and community so that people with come out and shift this feeling,” said Cheng.
Apr. 25, 2018
'Reclaiming our sense of security': Community begins to heal after Toronto van attack
“I think that was really symbolic,” she told CTV News Channel on Wednesday. “We walk these streets every day and our sense of security was taken away so by coming together and praying and walking, we were blessing our neighbourhood, and reclaiming our sense of security.”
The Van Attack: One year later
Touching people like Jesse James, Sean Huh, and Lily Cheng, neighbours who helped organize a moment of silence the next day, prayer walks, music at Olive Square Park and Mel Lastman Square and, eventually, a healing movement called We Love Willowdale.