The Waitara Foundling Home was first established in an old cottage on Leek's Orchard. In 1902, a two-storey brick home for mothers and babies was built, providing accommodation for mothers and their babies from hospitals and private homes throughout the eastern states of Australia.
In 1921, Waitara Foundling Home was granted 5 shillings per week for every orphan in its care by the NSW Government. This allowance was extended to a range of private institutions that cared for children.
In 1925 a pre-school kindergarten was opened within the Home, for the children in residential care.
Whenever possible, mothers remain with their children until they were weaned.
The Waitara Foundling Home was renamed Our Lady of Mercy Home in 1928 in recognition of the fact that many of the children in the home were not orphaned.
12 September 2017
Cite this: https://www.findandconnect.gov.au/guide/nsw/NE00183
First published by the Find & Connect Web Resource Project for the Commonwealth of Australia, 2011
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