St Mary's Home for Children was the new name given to St Mary's Mission of Hope in Halifax Street, Adelaide, in 1953. The Home's new name acknowledged that St Mary's had returned to caring for young children only. It was run by an independent management committee that reported to the Anglican Diocese of Adelaide until 1978, when the Anglican Child Care Services Committee took over. In 1968 the Home moved to a new building at Prospect. St Mary's Home for Children closed in 1990.
St Mary's Home for Children was the new name given to St Mary's Mission of Hope at 222 Halifax Street, Adelaide, in 1953. The Home's new name recognised that St Mary's had returned to caring for only young children, mostly aged between two and six years. Prior to this date the Home had taken in very young children and teenagers
During the 1950s St Mary's struggled with lack of funding, overcrowding and problems with staff. The Halifax Street building had long been regarded as inadequate and discussions began in 1955 about the need to find new premises. Fortunately, in 1968 Mr EW Tucker, the son of an early member of the management committee, donated a property to St Mary's. As it was a double block with only one house on it, there was ample room for building a new Home.
In December 1968 the dilapidated Halifax Street building was closed and St Mary's Home for Children moved to a new purpose-built facility at 26 Daphne Street, Prospect. The new premises consisted of two buildings, one providing accommodation and facilities for staff and the other dormitories for up to 30 children, a playroom, dining room, kitchen, laundry and infirmary. During the 1970s the Home received government subsidies to assist with running costs and the employment of a social worker. The Home provided both residential care and day care. During 1978, 78 children lived in at the Home and another 40 attended day care.
That same year, the Anglican Child Care Services Committee was established. This body took over management of St Mary's and the other Anglican Homes for children from their independent committees. The new committee began to move residents of St Mary's into cottage care during the early 1980s.
St Mary's Home for Children closed as a residential institution in 1990. The day care centre for pre-school children continued to operate at the Daphne Street site. The former residential area of the home was used as offices for Anglicare SA.
1904 - 1953 St Mary's Mission of Hope
1953 - 1990 St Mary's Home for Children
Sources used to compile this entry: Dickey, Brian, Giving a hand: A history of Anglicare SA since 1860, Anglicare SA, Adelaide, 2003.
Prepared by: Karen George and Gary George
Created: 6 August 2013, Last modified: 2 November 2017