Befus, Doreen, 1926-2001

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Befus, Doreen, 1926-2001

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Doreen "Ella" Befus, 1926-2001, was born in Medicine Hat. Abandoned by her parents, she was made a ward of the Provincial Government and in 1933, was sent to the Provincial Training School for the Mentally Handicapped (currently known as Michener Centre). She received schooling up to the Grade III level and then was declared "uneducable." In 1976, she was able to move permanently into the community to live independently. Doreen Befus became an activist for the rights of the disabled . She travelled extensively across Canada during the International Year of the Disabled in 1981. A movie was made of Doreen's life in 1983. In 1988, she was awarded the national Heart of Gold Award by Air Canada

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