The legacy of deafblind trailblazer Helen Keller will be celebrated around the world on Monday, 27 June, which is Helen Keller Communication Day.

This year marks the American author, political activist, lecturer and deafblind advocate’s 136th birthday.

The Blind Foundation provides services to more than 600 deafblind people around the country.

Aucklander Wendy Chiang, who has been deafblind since childhood, plans to take part in the Blind Foundation’s commemorations.

“Technically, I have been deafblind since I was two and a half, but it was my vision that bothered me until I had surgery in my teens which took a lot of my hearing,” she says.

Wendy completed a Bachelor of Arts in psychology and education and a post-graduate diploma in public health.

She also worked at Auckland University as a research assistant, which involved tasks like transcription, interviews, focus groups and analysis work.

Wendy hopes to eventually do her master’s degree in public health and do a research-based thesis involving deafblindness or blindness.

The Blind Foundation will hold Helen Keller Communication Day celebrations in south Auckland, Waikato, Napier and Invercargill, along with an event in Christchurch in conjunction with the Deafblind Association of New Zealand.