Some people may find content on this website distressing. Read more
Australian Capital Territory - Organisation

Barnardos Children's Family Centre (c. 1983 - )

  • Welfare - First Barnardo Home opened in Canberra 29 February 1964

    Welfare - First Barnardo Home opened in Canberra 29 February 1964, courtesy of National Archives of Australia.

c. 1983
Care Provider, Children's Home, Foster Care, Home and Non-denominational
Alternative Names
  • Barnardo House (also known as)

Barnardos Children's Family Centre in Downer came into being in 1983 and replaced Barnados House and Berwick House in Curtin. By the early 1990s Barnardos had shifted away from residential care to foster care and family support. From 1993 Barnardos Children's Family Centre has run Find-a-Family ACT, a program organising permanent foster placements.


Barnardos Children's Family Centre offers family support, out-of-home care and supported accommodation services for children, adolescents and their families in the ACT and surrounding areas. The Centre was previously known as Barnardos House; it opened in 1964 and was the first children's Home providing permanent care in the ACT.

Since the 1970s there has been a major emphasis on family-based placements. In 2011 there are no children's homes for children under twelve. Efforts are focused on finding permanent solutions for children within their own family if possible, alternatively children are placed with substitute families or supported in independent living.

Services include: foster care, homelessness transition programs and housing outreach, mentoring programs, family support. The program Find-a-Family ACT (or FAF Canberra) assists children unable to live at home with permanent family care placements or adoption.


1983 -
Address - Barnardos Canberra Children's Family Centre was located at 2 Atherton Street, Downer. Location: Downer


 1964 - 1982 Barnardos House
 1968 - 1983 Berwick House
       c. 1983 - Barnardos Children's Family Centre

Related Archival Collections


Online Resources


Welfare - First Barnardo Home opened in Canberra 29 February 1964
Welfare - First Barnardo Home opened in Canberra 29 February 1964
National Archives of Australia


Sources used to compile this entry: Barnardos, Barnardos Australia, 2011,

Prepared by: Lydia Connell