June 22, 2023 By CDHD Helen Keller Day: June 27, 2023 Helen Keller was born on June 27, 1880. The impact of her life had a lasting affect. As the first deaf-blind person to effectively communicate with the sighted and hearing world, she became an international symbol of courage and hope. Over the course of her life, her perseverance and resilience resulted in several achievements that changed the way the world viewed people with disabilities. Just some of these achivements include: first person with deaf-blindness to earn a college degree, graduating from Radcliffe in 1904. wrote and published 12 books throughout her life. This included her autobiography The Story of My Life, which is still in print in over 50 languages. nominated for a Nobel Peace Price in 1953 after her visit to the Mideast, advocating for the rights of people with disabilities. met every US president from Calvin Coolidge to John F Kennedy. awarded the French Legion of Honor (France, 1952), National Order of the Southern Cross (Brazil, 1952) and Presidential Medal of Freedom (US, 1964). first person awarded the Order of the Golden Heart in the Philippines. inducted into the Women’s Hall of Fame in 1965. Keller was also a prominent and vocal advocate for change. She championed the rights of people with disabilities wherever she went. Every year, on her birthday, we observe Helen Keller Day. It falls within national Deaf-Blind Awareness Week (June 25-July, 2023) – a time to not only celebrate her legacy but also recognize and advocate with the deaf-blind community. In honor of Helen and Deaf-Blind Awareness Week, here are 10 inspiring quotes from Keller herself. If you’re looking for deaf-blind resources, check out our Idaho Project for Children and Youth with Deaf-Blindness. This project provides resources and training to families and professionals who work with children with deaf-blindness (age birth to 21). You can also check out the Idaho iCanConnect program on the Idaho Assistive Technology Project website. This program provides communication equipment to Idahoans with deaf-blindness of all ages completely free of charge. Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much. Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence. Never bend your head. Always hold it high. Look the world straight in the eye. Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved. When we do the best that we can, we never know what miracle is wrought in our life, or in the life of another. Knowledge is love and light and vision. We can do anything if we stick to it long enough. Your success and happiness lies in you. Resolve to keep happy, and your joy and you shall form an invincible host against difficulties. The world is moved along, not only by the mighty shoves of its heroes, but also by the aggregate of tiny pushes of each honest worker. No pessimist ever discovered the secret of the stars, or sailed to an uncharted land, or opened a new doorway for the human spirit.