Roland Boys' Home, run by the Anglican Church, opened in Sheffield in 1951. It accommodated orphans and state wards from the age of six. The Home closed in the early 1990s.
Roland Boys' Home opened officially on 9 June 1951 at 69 High Street, Sheffield opposite the park and 200 yards from the state school which the boys attended. It was a certified institution under the Infants' Welfare Act 1935 and an approved children's home under the Child Welfare Act 1960. Although the Anglican Church ran the Home, boys of any denomination could be placed there.
It seems likely that at the time Roland was established, the Managers considered applying for British child migrants. In 1951, John Moss, a British child welfare expert, visited Tasmania to inspect Homes that took child migrants. In a letter written in 1952 to FH Southey, the Director of the Tasmanian Government Tourist and Immigration Department, he said:
What happened about the scheme for taking migrant boys at the newly acquired Home near Launceston? As we agreed, when we were there, it wanted considerable improvement before it could be considered suitable for migrants.
His description of the Home as 'newly acquired' seems to fit Roland.
When boys at Clarendon Children's Home reached school age, they were sent to Roland Boys' Home.
James Boyce wrote that, since Roland was in the north of the state, it probably received Aboriginal children removed by the government from Cape Barren Island and the Furneaux Group. The Report of the Stolen Generations Assessor of 2008 mentions Roland Boys' Home.
Roland Children's Home was an approved children's Home under the Child Welfare Act 1960.
In 1988, Roland changed from institutional to cottage accommodation. There were four family group homes with four to six children who lived with the house parents and their children. In 1991, there were 13 children in these homes with an average age of 13 years.
In the early 1990s, the emphasis in child welfare practice on supporting children in their own homes and communities led the Managers of Roland to consider new directions for working with families on the north-west coast. These considerations apparently led to the closure of the home. The organisation continues as Roland Children's Services which funds other organisations concerned with children's welfare. It holds some records of the former home. In 2011, the building is the headquarters of Kentish Council.
1951 - c. 1993 Roland Boys' Home
1993 - Roland Children's Services
Sources used to compile this entry: 'Building progress at Roland Home', Church News, November 1975, p. 5; 'Roland Home's big year', Church News, December 1975, p. 7; Report of the Stolen Generations Assessor, Department of Premier and Cabinet, Tasmania, 2008, http://www.dpac.tas.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0004/53770/Stolen_Generations_Assessor_final_report.pdf; Boyce, James, For the record: background information on the work of the Anglican Church with Aboriginal children and directory of Anglican agencies providing residential care to children from 1830 to 1980, Anglicare Australia, Melbourne, 2003; Ombudsman Tasmania, Review of claims of abuse from adults in state care as children - Final Report - Phase 2, June 2006; Senate Community Affairs References Committee Secretariat, Parliament of Australia, Forgotten Australians: A report on Australians who experienced institutional or out-of-home care as children, Commonwealth of Australia, 2004, 2004. Also available at http://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Senate/Community_Affairs/Completed_inquiries/2004-07/inst_care/index. p.43.; Stephens, Geoffrey, The Anglican Church in Tasmania: a diocesan history to mark the sesquicentenary, 1992, Trustees of the Diocese, Hobart, 1991, 272 pp.
Prepared by: Caroline Evans
Created: 12 January 2011, Last modified: 12 February 2019