Child Welfare Reception Home was the new name given in 1953 to the Government Receiving Home in Mount Lawley. It gave temporary accommodation to children and young people who were: awaiting placement with foster parents or institutions; staying in Perth for medical or dental treatment; and referred from. Or awaiting appearances at, the Children's Court. In 1973 Child Welfare Reception Home became the Mt Lawley Reception Home.
The Child Welfare Reception Home in Mount Lawley was run by the Child Welfare Department. It had a number of functions. It was a temporary place for children coming into the child welfare system and who went on to placement in an institution or foster home. Children from the country who had no family in Perth might also stay there while they had medical or dental treatment in Perth. The Reception Home also took children who had been referred from the Children's Court, or who were awaiting a court appearance. From 1959 the Reception Home stopped accepting children under 3 years of age, who were instead sent to Ngal-a Mothercraft Home and Training Centre.
In 1954, the Child Welfare Reception Home was criticised by an academic study which found that the facilities were old, inappropriate and depressing; that there was too much (and unnecessary) use of solitary confinement, and that the treatment of juvenile offenders in the State was well behind modern standards of practice.
1893 - 1907 Government Industrial School
1907 - 1935 Government Receiving Depot
1935 - 1952 Government Receiving Home
1953 - 1972 Child Welfare Reception Home
1973 - 1980 Mt Lawley Reception Home
1980 - 1984 Walcott Centre
Sources used to compile this entry: 'Mt. Lawley Reception Home's Detention Methods Are Primitive - But They Have A Tough Job', Sunday Times, 15 August 1954, p. 5, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article59693713; 'State's Treatment Of Juvenile Offenders Is Condemned', The West Australian, 13 July 1954, p. 2, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article52954491; 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; Western Australia. Child Welfare Department, Annual Report of the Child Welfare Department, Child Welfare Department, Perth [W.A.], 1928-1972. 1953.; State Records Office Western Australia, 'Unusual Occurrences' Series 3172 Cons 1031 Item 1955/1385 v2.
Prepared by: Debra Rosser
Created: 19 March 2012, Last modified: 10 August 2022