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Celebrating Disability Pride Month

July 15, 2021
[Editor’s note: this post comes from Dr. Carlie Rhoads, AFB Research Specialist.] Happy Disability Pride Month! Have you not heard of Disability Pride Month? I am not surprised! Even in my work as a research specialist for the American Foundation for the Blind, I have found that most of my professional colleagues have not previously heard of this pride month, either. Disability Pride Month occurs in July each year since 1990. What major piece of legislation was passed on July 26, 1990? You…

Happy Birthday to Helen Keller: A Woman Who Spoke Truth to Power...and Was A Real Person!

June 25, 2021
Eighty years ago, in May 1941, seven months before the United States entered the Second World War, Helen Keller visited the Rochester School for the Deaf and was asked if she thought that democracies would triumph over totalitarian aggressors, Helen replied "Yes, definitely, after a long, hard fight. Justice and truth are embodied in human democratic institutions.” In a year filled with challenges, including a bizarre idea that circulated on social media questioning Helen Keller’s existence…
Author AFB Staff
Blog Topics Helen Keller

What We're Reading: Access to Education, Voting, Local Campaigns, and More

June 17, 2021
AFB strives to keep people who are blind or who have low vision and their families up to date on the policy issues that affect us all. Here are a few recent news stories we found particularly noteworthy. After Months Of Special Education Turmoil, Families Say Schools Owe Them—NPR, June 16, 2021 "Roughly 7 million children in the U.S. receive special education services under a decades-old federal law — or did, until the pandemic began. Many of those services slowed or stopped when schools…

Introducing ‘Our History’: AFB’s New Historical Timeline

May 6, 2021
As part of the American Foundation for the Blind’s (AFB) year-long centennial celebration, we recently published Our History, a robust new timeline outlining AFB’s past. Lesser-known milestones in advocacy, education, and technological innovation are all chronicled, from the creation of Talking Books in the 1930s, to the first international conference on AIDS-related vision loss in the 1990s, to our most recent work to study the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on adults and students who are…
Author AFB Staff
Blog Topics Helen Keller, Reading

Animal Friends: Helen Keller’s and Yours

April 26, 2021
Helen Keller and Polly Thomson, seated outside on the grass with German Shepherd dog nearby, circa 1955
Helen Keller loved animals! April 2021 is #NationalPetMonth, and as we post images from the Helen Keller Archive of some of the 16 pet dogs that Helen treasured during her long life, we invite you to submit images of your pets! Tell us how your animal friends have enriched your lives! In November of 1967, fifth grader Robin Gates wrote to Helen Keller to ask of Helen's dog Lioness and shares how she enjoys reading of Helen's life: 3126 Cold Springs Rd. Baldwinsville, N.Y. Nov. 19, 1967…
Author AFB Staff
Blog Topics Helen Keller

APH President Dr. Craig Meador's Acceptance Speech for Helen Keller Achievement Award

March 26, 2021
The American Printing House for the Blind (APH) has been a key steward of the history of blindness for more than 160 years. The organization has set the standard for how we adapt to and anticipate changes and innovate to meet new demands. For all of this and more, APH is a worthy recipient of the Helen Keller Achievement Award. Video Transcript: Hello, I’m Dr. Craig Meador. On behalf of APH and its 300-plus employees, I want to thank you for this very prestigious award. We’re grateful to…
Author AFB Staff
Blog Topics

Sam Latif Accepts the Helen Keller Achievement Award for Procter & Gamble

March 16, 2021
Procter & Gamble received a Keller Achievement Award for setting a sterling example through its diversity and inclusion initiatives. P&G has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to disability inclusion and making the company, its brands and services more inclusive for people with disabilities. On behalf of Procter & Gamble, the award was accepted by Sumaira "Sam" Latif. Sam is Company Accessibility Leader at Procter & Gamble. She has held multiple roles in IT for P&G…

International Women's Day 2021

March 8, 2021
In recognition of Women’s History Month and the incredible leadership of Helen Keller, our most famous advocate, AFB is hosting a panel discussion on “Women in Leadership: A Conversation About the Intersection of Gender and Visual Impairment," featuring a diverse group of visually impaired women in leadership roles—from corporations to politics, nonprofits, and small businesses. Join Us March 18, 2021, at 2 pm Eastern! Our distinguished panelists will address the key issues facing…

Blind Wikipedia Editor Dr. Skylar Covich on Wikipedia’s 20th Anniversary

January 14, 2021
Most of us are probably familiar with Wikipedia, the free Internet Encyclopedia that anyone can edit. For Dr. Skylar Covich, his journey with Wikipedia stretches back to 2003, almost as long as the site has been in existence. In light of Wikipedia’s 20th anniversary on January 15th, Skylar recently reflected upon his journey with this vast knowledge-based resource, and suggested where he would like to see it go. Skylar was born totally blind, with Leber's congenital amaurosis -- a group of…

Learn Disability History

January 6, 2021
Teachers and parents! Did you know that the American Foundation for the Blind—where Helen Keller worked for over 40 years—has created free, accessible lesson plans for teaching disability history? Now is a great time to teach your children or students what blind and deafblind writers, activists, and leaders have accomplished. The lessons are designed to teach middle and high school students how to do their own research using digital and physical archives. Topics include the…
Author AFB Staff
Blog Topics Helen Keller, Education