The Junior Red Cross Home opened at Henley Beach in 1933 as a convalescent and holiday Home for children undergoing treatment at the Adelaide Children's Hospital. Run by the Red Cross, it accommodated up to 20 children. In 1946 a second building was added to the Home and the combined premises became known as the Lady Hore-Ruthven Junior Red Cross Home.
The first Junior Red Cross Home opened on Seaview Road at Henley Beach in September 1933. It was run by the South Australian Division of the Australia Red Cross as a convalescent and holiday Home for children undergoing treatment at the Adelaide Children's Hospital. It took in children from all over South Australia and from the Northern Territory. Children deemed likely to contract diseases, such as polio were also admitted with the intention of early intervention to prevent the onset of illness.
A new brick building was erected for the purpose close to the Lady Galway Convalescent Home which had been established during World War I as a hostel for convalescing soldiers. The Home was described in the Annual Report as being 'on high ground, practically overlooking the ocean, within a minute of the beach.' On 29 September, seven children moved in under the care of a matron, Sister Parkinson. The Home had the capacity to accommodate up to 20 children at one time.
In 1934 the Australian Inland Mission [AIM] held its second holiday camp for inland children at the new Junior Red Cross Home. In successive years the AIM summer camps were moved to Kapara Convalescent Home at Glenelg.
The Junior Red Cross Home was reported to be 'the first of its kind in South Australia' and the second in the Commonwealth. The increasing demand for accommodation led to the construction of a new wing in the Home in 1937, called the Kangaroo Wing. This was funded by donations.
During World War II, the decision was made to close the Home to children because the Junior Red Cross felt that it was 'unwise' to continue bringing children to the Home from the country, given that it was on the seafront. During 1942-43 the Home was refurnished and operated as s a holiday house for AIF nurses and women from the Voluntary Aid Detachment.
In 1943 the Home reopened to children and continued to be in high demand, with a long waiting list for accommodation. In 1945, the Lady Galway Convalescent Home for ex-servicemen and women moved to a new site in Glenelg and in 1946 the Junior Red Cross Home took over its Henley Beach premises. The two premises together were renamed the Lady Hore Ruthven Junior Red Cross Home.
1933 - 1946 Junior Red Cross Home, Henley Beach
1946 - 1959 Lady Hore-Ruthven Junior Red Cross Home
1959 - 1968 Junior Red Cross Home, Glenelg
Sources used to compile this entry: 'VALUABLE WORK OF THE JUNIOR RED CROSS', The Mail (Adelaide, South Australia), 30 September 1933, p. 2, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article58629669; George, Karen, Finding your own way, Nunkuwarrin Yunti of South Australia Inc., 2005, http://nunku.org.au/resources/; Annual Reports of the Red Cross Society, South Australian Division 1930s-1940s.
Prepared by: Karen George and Gary George
Created: 16 February 2011, Last modified: 8 May 2014