Betsy Stenhouse honored by former school at her nursing facility

Betsy Stenhouse, a resident of Harborview Nursing & Rehabilitation in Doylestown, recently had her wish to be recognized by her former school granted, thanks to nonprofit Twilight Wish Foundation.

Betsy, 89, contracted polio when she was a child, which left her disabled.

She studied education at West Chester University and began her teaching career in 1952.

Betsy was the first disabled schoolteacher at the Widener Memorial Industrial Teaching School for Crippled Children in Philadelphia, now known as The Widener Memorial School, teaching there for 27 years.  

She was very active in her community, starting a support group for others who were also afflicted with polio.

In addition, she rescued stray cats near her home and cared for them, spaying and feeding those in need.

Betsy also worked with local shelters to find homes for those cats in need.

To honor her teaching legacy, The Widener Memorial School created an award in her name, which was presented to a student at graduation on May 30th, 2019. 

Current principal Harris Gaffin visited Betsy at her nursing facility on October 4th to present her with a certificate recognizing her for her dedication to teaching.

In addition, Harris brought many old photos and yearbooks to share with her.

Twilight Wish staff presented Betsy with another certificate, flowers and a cake and cupcakes to share with other residents there.

Twilight Wish Foundation is a nonprofit charitable organization whose mission is to honor and enrich the lives of seniors through intergenerational Twilight Wish celebrations.

Since its founding in 2003, Twilight Wish has granted over 3,134 individual wishes to seniors throughout the U.S. 

Twilight Wish grants wishes to seniors who are 65 and older or a permanent resident of a nursing home and earn less than 200% of poverty level. 

If you would like to nominate a deserving senior or get involved with Twilight Wish, visit the website at or call 215-230-8777 ext. 104. 

PHOTO CAP: From left, Mary Farrell, Director of Community Relations, Twilight Wish Foundation; Harris Gaffin, Principal, The Widener Memorial School; Betsy Stenhouse, wish recipient; Michelle Bowren, Director of Wish Management, Twilight Wish Foundation; and Elaine Berk, Twilight Wish Foundation volunteer.