HELEN KELLER

How fortunate are those who are born into this world with two eyes to see all its beauty! But there are some unfortunate people who can neither see nor hear. This world, which is so full of beautiful colours and sweet sounds, appears colourless and dull to these poor souls. What a misfortune! They cannot see the lovely flowers blooming in the gardens and hear the birds singing sweet songs. They indeed feel very sad, for their fate is so hard. Worse is the fate of those who can see and hear once and then no more. But they are so courageous and bold that they do not look unhappy. They accept the challenge of their fate and try to live cheerfully.

Among such brave and courageous persons, the name of Miss Helen Keller tops the list.

Helen Keller was born in 1880 in a little town in the United States of America. Up to the. age of two, she was quite a normal child. She could see and hear every thing. In February 1882, little Helen fell dangerously ill. All felt sorry for her, because she became blind and deaf. Her parents looked sad. Everybody was unhappy and the little child felt miserable.

When she was seven years old, her life suddenly changed. Helen's father asked a lady named Miss Sullivan to come and look after his blind child. Miss Sullivan had herself, become blind, when she was a child but afterwards she got her eyesight back. She thanked God for His kindness to her by helping other blind people and making them happy and content. She started teaching Helen. One day, she took Helen to the river bank and put her hand in the water. Slowly she made her write the word 'w-a-t-e-r' on the sand. She made her do it several times and thus Helen learnt how to spell the word 'water'. She felt very excited, because she knew that at last there would be some light in her dark world.

The work was very slow and difficult, but Miss Sullivan was very kind and patient. Little by little, she taught Helen about mountains and rivers and about history and geography. She even, taught her how to count and do sums.

When she was eight, she was sent to a school for blind children. She had forgotten how to speak, but her teacher helped her. She would put Helen's hand on her own lips and let her feel the movements of the lips at the time of speaking. Helen did many exercises like this and at last at the age of ten she was able to speak again. "What a joy" she exclaimed. By and by, she learnt to read books. These books were printed with raised points instead of letters and she read them by touching with her fingers. In this way, she was able to learn as much as other people could. She passed all her examinations easily. She went to college and then to Harvard University. She studied at the University and graduated without difficulty." She proved to be a better student than many others. Her teachers loved and admired her.

In 1956, this wonderful lady visited Pakistan. She was seventy-six, but still very active. Pakistani people gave her a warm welcome. She came to our country to help the blind and the deaf. She addressed many gatherings, in Karachi and visited the School for the Blind, Deaf and Dumb. "What a nice school!" she exclaimed. "How wonderful it is to be with you, my dear sons and daughters! Always be happy and cheerful. Never curse your fate. You can do everything in this world", she said to the students of the school and admired heartily all the ladies, who were working and teaching there voluntarily with so much zeal and selfless affection.

 
 
     
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