George Edward Ardill was an evangelical preacher and formidable and energetic organiser of private charity in Sydney. He established the Sydney Rescue Work Society and the Society for Providing Homes for Neglected Children and, through them and other societies, ran babies and children's homes, women's refuges, female rescue homes, temperance homes, lying-in homes and hospitals. He also sat on the Aborigines' Protection Board.
Ardill was active in politics, the temperance crusade, prisoner's aid and religious missions and worked with children, unmarried mothers and Aboriginal people. His wife Louisa Ardill worked alongside him, and his daughter Dr Katie Ardill Bryce took over his work at South Sydney Women's Hospital.
Ardill founded the Blue Ribbon Gospel Army; the Sydney Rescue Work Society and the Society for Providing Homes for Neglected Children. Through these different agencies, the Ardills founded the Home of Hope for Friendless and Fallen Women; the Open All Night Refuge; Our Babies Home; Our Children's Home; Rockdale Babies Home and Roslyn Hall Babies and Children's Home; South Sydney Women's Hospital and Bethesda Maternity Home; Jubilee Home and Hostel for Business Girls.
Ardill was Secretary of the Aborigines Protection Association from 1886-1897 and the Vice-President of the Aborigines Welfare Board from 1897 to 1915. He set up the Cootamundra Girls Home.