• Organisation

Lorna Hodgkinson Sunshine Home


The Lorna Hodgkinson Sunshine Home, on the Pacific Highway in Gore Hill, was the new name given in 1951 to what had been the Sunshine Institute. It was a residential institution for disabled children and adults. The Gore Hill facility may have closed around 1990, when it was replaced by a new facility at Pymble. In 2013 the organisation was known as Sunshine and continued to provide accommodation and respite care for children and adults with disabilities across Sydney and the Central Coast. In 2017 the organisation changed its name again to Unisson Disability.

Lorna Hodgkinson was a psychologist and teacher of children with intellectual disabilities. She founded the Sunshine Institute in 1924. In 1951, Hodgkinson converted the Sunshine Institute to a not-for-profit organisation and transferred the management of her institute to a board of trustees. After she died the board renamed the institute the Lorna Hodgkinson Sunshine Home.

The Lorna Hodgkinson Sunshine Home featured in The Australian Women’s Weekly in September 1958, as part of a fund-raising drive. The article, ‘Home for those who are always children’, said the Home admitted children who were aged four and over and cared for them throughout their lives, into advanced old age. The home was described as catering to a range of people with intellectual disabilities, including those with Down Syndrome and problems resulting from acquired brain injuries.

According to the Women’s Weekly, the home was on 2 and a half acres of land. The staff included a female medical superintendent, who asked not to be named, and nurses and teachers. Fees were charged of between £6/6 and £8/8 a week, but the home undertook to keep the children permanently, even if the parents could no longer pay.

The care provided at Lorna Hodgkinson Sunshine Home has changed in recent decades. In 2013 it was trading under the name Sunshine and provided community care, education and training programs and respite care for children and youth and other people with disabilities, as well as advocacy. Based at Pymble, it runs programs across Sydney and the Central Coast.

In 2017 the organisation became known as Unisson Disability.


  • 1951 - 1990?

    Lorna Hodgkinson Sunshine Home was situated at 212 Pacific Highway, Gore Hill, New South Wales (Building Demolished)

  • c. 1990 -

    Lorna Hodgkinson Sunshine Home was situated at 6 West Street, Pymble, New South Wales (Building Demolished)



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