The Government Receiving Depot, Subiaco continued the Government Industrial School and Receiving Depot from 1907. It gave temporary accommodation to children who were taken into 'care' as they awaited placement with foster parents or institutions. It also accommodated children who were awaiting medical or dental treatment in Perth, or who were scheduled for appearance at the Children's Court. Private admissions were also accommodated.
The Government Receiving Depot moved location twice. Originally in Subiaco, it relocated to West Perth in 1916 and to new buildings in Mount Lawley in 1921.
Although its name wasn't changed in the statistics of the Child Welfare Department until 1935, photographs published in the 1926 annual report refer to Receiving Depot as the 'Government Receiving Home for Children'.
A letter of appreciation of the The Daily News Orphans' Christmas Cheer Fund in 1915 gives an insight into life at the Receiving Depot. The letter shows that donations enabled the children to occasionally have extras that were not part of their daily experience:
'[Matron] divided half the money amongst the elder children, who were taken by the assistant matron to the city on Christmas Eve to purchase their own presents. Toys and Christmas stockings were bought for the infants, and the balance expended in fruit and cordials for the Christmas dinner. Letter, 27 December 1915 published in The Daily News 2 December 1916, p.10'
14 September 2017
Cite this: https://www.findandconnect.gov.au/guide/wa/WE00612
First published by the Find & Connect Web Resource Project for the Commonwealth of Australia, 2011
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