The Shaftesbury Home for Babies and Mothers was established by the State Children's Relief Board in the old Shaftesbury Reformatory buildingson Old South Head Road, in present-day Vaucluse, around 1913 or 1914. It was a replacement for the Thirlmere Home for Babies and was one of a number of homes for infants and unmarried mothers that were intended to combat infant neglect and mortality by promoting breastfeeding and maternal care. Like Thirlmere, it had its own dairy to supply milk. It was transferred to Brush Farm, becoming the Eastwood Home for Mothers and Babies, in February 1915.
The Shaftesbury site had previously been used as an institution for 'inebriate women', and prior to that, had housed the Shaftesbury Reformatory.
Following the closure of the Shaftesbury Home for Babies and Mothers, it became the Shaftesbury Inebriate Institution for Males, which closed around 1927.
1907 - 1913 Thirlmere Babies' Home
c. 1913 - 1915 Shaftesbury Home for Babies and Mothers
1915 - 1922 Eastwood Home for Mothers and Babies
Sources used to compile this entry: Report of the State Children's Relief Board, W.A. Gullick, Government Printer, Sydney, 1894-1920. Also available at https://www.opengov.nsw.gov.au/main; Eastwood Home for Mothers and Babies, State Records Authority of New South Wales website, State of New South Wales through the State Records Authority of NSW 2016. Also available at https://www.records.nsw.gov.au/agency/6428; Woolahra Municipal Council report, 'Former Vaucluse High School Site, Laguna St, Vaucluse'.
Prepared by: Naomi Parry
Created: 21 June 2012, Last modified: 28 October 2016