Hamilton Hill Hostel was established around 1971 as a government-run hostel for Aboriginal high school students. For an unknown period in the 1980s, it was run by a Uniting Church agency, most likely Sister Kate's Child and Family Services. It was possibly transferred back to child welfare authorities by 1988, closing by 1994, possibly earlier.
The history of the Hamilton Hill Hostel is unclear. Government reports (Signposts 2004, pp.230-232) show that a house at 22 Frederick Road was purchased by the Department of Native Welfare in 1971 for an Aboriginal Education and Employment Hostel but was not open when a survey of these hostels was published in 1971 (in that survey, the hostel was called 'Frederick Street'). It is possible, though, that the Department of Native Welfare did operate the hostel for a short period before all hostels of this type were transferred to the Department for Community Welfare in 1972, which continued to run the hostel until at least 1979.
Records are again unclear about which organisation ran the hostel in the 1980s, though it seems to have continued as hostel which accommodated Aboriginal high school students. Reports mention it being run by a Uniting Church agency in the 1980s and, if so, Sister Kate's Child and Family Services is the most likely of the Uniting Church agencies to have had that role as their expertise was with Aboriginal children.
By 1988, it seems that the Hamilton Hill Hostel was once again in the hands of the child welfare authorities. In 1990, it was associated with other hostels administered from the McCall Centre (a departmental facility), but by 1995 it was not recorded in published departmental reports.
Sources used to compile this entry: Information Services, Department for Community Development, 'pp.231-232', Signposts: A Guide for Children and Young People in Care in WA from 1920, Government of Western Australia, 2004, http://signposts.cpfs.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.360) - 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: 22 November 2018