Matthews Cottage, St Mary's opened in Alice Springs in 1973 as one of three town based family group homes. The others were Leslie Cottage and Heath Cottage. Run by St Mary's Child and Family Welfare Service who also ran St Mary's Children's Village, Matthews Cottage provided cottage style accommodation for up to ten children under the supervision of cottage parents. Records suggest that Matthews Cottage closed in the 1980s.
Matthews Cottage, St Mary's was opened in 1973 by the Anglican organisation, St Mary's Child and Family Welfare Service, which also ran the St Mary's Children's Village. It was named after Bishop Matthews of the Anglican Church.
Located in Nichols Street, Alice Springs, Matthews Cottage was one of three town based cottages. The others were Leslie Cottage and Heath Cottage. The three cottages at St Mary's Children's Village and the three town cottages were together often referred to as St Mary's.
Each town cottage provided family style accommodation for between eight and ten Aboriginal children. The children were supervised by a cottage parent or parents who were assisted by a relief cottage parent when required. The cottage took in children who were wards of the State and siblings were often placed together. Most attended the Traeger Park Primary School and Alice Springs High School.
In the early 1980s Matthews Cottage accommodated children with disabilities. Records suggest that the Matthews Cottage closed in the 1980s.
Sources used to compile this entry: F1411, SD 1859 W,B. St Mary's Hostel - Policy and development; NTRS 630/P2 82/3726 Welstat Children in Care; Email from wife of superintendent/director St Mary's 1971-1982, 13 October 2013.
Prepared by: Karen George and Gary George
Created: 16 December 2013, Last modified: 28 November 2014