Lutanda Children's Home was established in Wentworth Falls in 1930 by Miss Florence Dalwood. After Dalwood's death in 1949, Lutanda moved into a large purpose-built orphanage on Boundary Road in Pennant Hills which later housed around 50 to 60 children in separate buildings for boys and girls. Lutanda closed in 1984.
The Lutanda Children's Home was first located in Falls Road, Wentworth Falls (in the Blue Mountains). It was opened by Miss Florence Dalwood who had worked in the George Muller Homes in Bristol in the United Kingdom and wanted to establish a Christian home for 'needy' children, under the auspices of the Lutanda Children's Services.
The Home was supported by donations of clothes and money, and fundraising efforts including local fetes.
The children from Lutanda Children's Home performed at events including the Presbyterian Children's Day church services and the Children's Special Service Mission and Scripture Union rally.
A Sunday School operated out of Lutanda Children's Home, which local children would attend. Children from Lutanda attended the local schools at both locations including Wentworth Falls Primary, and Pennant Hills Primary and High Schools.
In 1949, Lutanda moved to Boundary Road, Pennant Hills. In February 1950, upwards of 50 children were accomodated at Lutanda.
In the mid 1950s, Camp Toukley was opened as a holiday retreat for children at Lutanda Children's Home.
House parents were brought in to help care for the children at Lutanda in smaller groups.
In 1979, two rooms of Lutanda Children's Home were used to start the Pennant Hills Christian School.
Lutanda Children's Home closed in 1984.
It is known that Lutanda Children's Home was an institution that housed Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children removed from their families. Joy Williams, a member of the Stolen Generations, who lived at Lutanda for over a decade, became the first Indigenous person to take legal action against the Government for losses suffered as a result of state-sanctioned removal policies.
Sources used to compile this entry: Bernie, Brian, 'Joy Fights For All the Stolen Children', in Green Left Weekly, 29 September 1993, https://www.greenleft.org.au/content/joy-fights-all-stolen-children; Hanson, Dallas, Why are they in children's homes: report of the ACOSS children's home intake survey, Australian Department of Social Services: Australian Council of Social Services, Australian Government Publishing Service, Canberra, 1979, 83 pp; Thinee, Kristy and Bradford, Tracy, Connecting Kin: Guide to Records, A guide to help people separated from their families search for their records [completed in 1998], New South Wales Department of Community Services, Sydney, New South Wales, 1998, https://clan.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/connectkin_guide.pdf; Email 25 October 2013 from former resident who provided advice about the location of the Pennant Hills home and the date of closure. Email 25 October 2013 from former resident who provided advice about the location of the Pennant Hills home and the date of closure. Hawkins, Ralph (photographer), (n.d.). Demolition of Lutanda, Pennant Hills [image], Hornsby Shire Council. Retrieved from https://hornsbyshire.recollect.net.au/nodes/view/1434 (accessed October 2019); Strong, Phillip (n.d.) 'The STRONGs of Ulster, Ireland, Chapter 12,' The STRONG Family. Retrieved from https://www.strong-family.org/strongs/chapter_12.html (accessed August 2021).
Prepared by: Nicola Laurent, Melissa Downing & Naomi Parry
Created: 21 March 2011, Last modified: 6 September 2021