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HomeHome  >  About Lions  >  Mission and History  >  Our History  >  Helen Keller

Helen Keller

Born in Tuscumbia, Alabama, USA, in 1880, Helen Keller developed a fever at 18 months of age that left her blind and deaf.

With the help of an exceptional teacher, Anne Mansfield Sullivan of the Perkins School for the Blind, Helen Keller learned sign language and braille. A few years later, she learned to speak. As an adult she became a tireless advocate for people with disabilities. And in 1925, she attended the Lions Clubs International Convention and challenged Lions to become "knights of the blind in the crusade against darkness."

The Lions accepted her challenge and our work ever since has included sight programs aimed at preventable blindness.

Helen Keller Day

In 1971, the Board of Directors of Lions Clubs International declared that June 1 would be remembered as Helen Keller Day. Lions around the world implement sight-related service projects on Helen Keller Day.

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I'M A LION BECAUSE ...

“You see the joy in people’s hearts and they say thank you, and the smile of a child. It’s all those things that make you realize you’ve done something for your community.”
Viv Grater, South Africa

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