Koolingar-Mia Group Home was established in 1978 in Collie. It provided accommodation for up to 6 children of all ages and emergency accommodation for an additional 2 children. It closed in 1992.
Government reports Signposts 2004, pp.169-171) show that the Koolingar-Mia Group Home was established as an initiative of the Collie Welfare Council, a local group who persuaded the child welfare authorities that there was a need for a small residential facility to accommodate Aboriginal children who, temporarily or longer-term, could not live at home. This became the Koolingar-Mia Group Home (sometimes also known as Kooloongaruna and the Collie Group Home), and was located in an existing house that was purchased by the government on Rowe Street in the Collie township.
By 1983, reports suggest that the Department for Community Welfare (DCW) was jointly managing the Home with the Collie Welfare Council. Throughout the 1980s it seems that it was filled to capacity on a regular basis, though could admit children who needed emergency placements.
In 1982, the DCW reported that a swimming pool had been installed, with funds raised by the Collie Welfare Council. In 1984, there were six children aged 9-13 years living at Koolingar-Mia.
Koolingar-Mia closed in 1992. The property was later used for a riding school for people with disabilities. In 2002 it re-opened for a short time as a child welfare facility called Collie Family Group Home. The building remained vacant in 2012.
Sources used to compile this entry: Heritage Council, 'Group Home Collie (fmr)', in inHerit: our heritage places, 1 Jan 2017, http://inherit.stateheritage.wa.gov.au/Public/Inventory/PrintSingleRecord/725aede7-e0b8-4ce8-b245-69fd71ba705a; Information Services, Department for Community Development, Signposts: A Guide for Children and Young People in Care in WA from 1920, Government of Western Australia, 2004, https://signposts.communities.wa.gov.au//pdf/pdf.aspx; State Records Office of Western Australia, Wards - Director's Approval to Transfer from one Institution to Another and Amend Training, Reference Code AU WA S1099- cons2607 A0191 V4 (p.58) - page numbers refer to PDF page number in digital file held by the Department of Communities (Child Protection and Family Support) in 2017.
Prepared by: Debra Rosser
Created: 15 March 2011, Last modified: 20 December 2018