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Beryl Henderson Trust and Beryl Henderson Foundation

The Beryl Henderson Foundation Inc (1987 – 2004) and The Beryl Henderson Trust (1987 – 2004) were set up by a group of Canberra feminists in memory of Beryl Henderson (1897 England –1990 Israel) who lived in Canberra during the 1960s and 1970s.  She was an active member of Canberra Women’s Liberation, Canberra Women’s Electoral Lobby and the ACT Abortion Law Reform Association. The first Canberra Women’s Refuge was opened by Beryl in 1975 and is named after her. A short account of Beryl’s life by Julia Ryan can be found in Caine, Barbara et al (eds) Australian Feminism – a companion, Oxford University Press, 1998. 


Founder members of the Trust and Foundation were:

Sarah Dowse

Margaret Hicks

Susan Magarey

Jill Matthews

Thomas Mautner

Helen Prendergast

Edna Ryan

Julia Ryan


The Foundation awarded an annual essay prize from 1988 to 2002 for an essay of maximum 5,000 words on a topic relevant to Women’s Studies or the status of women. Eligible entrants were to be enrolled in an undergraduate course in a post-secondary public education institution in Australia in the year preceding submission. The Beryl Henderson Foundation Inc was wound up in 2004. In January 2004 the Beryl Henderson Trust handed remaining funds to the Australian Federation of University Women to commemorate Beryl by an annual award, in the region of $1,000 to be made in Beryl Henderson’s name to a female Honours IV or postgraduate student, or researcher, to assist in completion of a research project


Held by Julia Ryan, 9 Fox Place Lyneham ACT 2602  Ph (02) 6247 7985

Email contact: Canberra & District Historical Society 

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