events, Forgotten Australians

Join the Forgotten Australians

by Wilma Robb (guest author) on 2 November, 2011

Join the Forgotten Australians’ rally in Canberra on the second anniversary of the  National Apology to Forgotten Australians and Former Child Migrants.

When: Wednesday 16th of November 2011 at 8.30am

Where: Meet in Civic Square outside the ACT Legislative Assembly, off London Circuit, Civic

Who are Forgotten Australians? They are approximately 500,000 Indigenous, non-Indigenous and former Child Migrant adults who were incarcerated as children in church, charity and state run orphanages, reformatories, training schools, psychiatric hospitals, children’s homes and in foster care during the 20th century from the 1930s – 1990s.

  • Commemorate the apology: On the 16th of November 2009, the Australian Parliament formally acknowledged and apologised for the ongoing trauma the Forgotten Australians still suffer today as a result of the abuse – sometimes criminal – and neglect of duty of care they experienced as children.
  • Meet with Federal and ACT politicians to discuss the issues affecting Forgotten Australians and children in care today (past and present). These include better access to social and health services and better protection of children who are currently in state care today.
  • Speakers: Forgotten Australian John Murray and Senator Gary Humphries.
  •  Visit and celebrate the opening day of the Forgotten Australians exhibition ‘INSIDE: Life in Children’s Homes’ at the National Museum of Australia after the gathering at the Legislative Assembly, for Music to Remember by Forgotten Australians.

Please RSVP by Friday 11 November to admin@wchm.org.au or 6290 2166.

This event is supported by the Women’s Centre for Health Matters Inc. (WCHM), Woden Community Services Inc., and Women and Prisons (WAP). For more information please contact WCHM on  (02) 6290 2166.

A green circular badge. Centre text reads 'National Apology. Forgotten Australians. 16th November 2011. 2nd Anniversary 2011. Text in outer circle reads 'Justice, Quality of Life. Compensation. Dignity. Join in Canberra.'
articles/lectures, Child Migrants, documents

Return to sender

by Hugh McGowan (guest author) on 30 September, 2011

Read the letter from the Superintendent of Quarrier’s Homes, Scotland to Former Child Migrant, Hugh McGowan’s mother, asking for her permission to send her son to Australia.

The envelope in the top of the image below is clearly marked “Retun to Sender”. Miss McGowan never read the letter and therefore her son was sent away without her knowledge.

Quarrier’s Homes

articles/lectures, Child Migrants, events, Forgotten Australians, memories, Stolen Generations

R U OK?

Should every day be an R U OK? Day? R U OK? is a non-profit Australian organisation which aims to provide a national focus and leadership on suicide prevention.

R U OK? Day is Thursday 15 September 2011. You can read more at the R U OK? website

articles/lectures, documents, film, Forgotten Australians, memories, photos

‘Sins of a Child’

by Rosie Klohs (guest author) on 18 July, 2011

‘No longer a number – my name is Rosie’. Rosie grew up as number 20280. Her experience as a state ward left her with post-traumatic stress disorder. She’s now in recovery and a Remembered Australian and made a short film about her experiences.

Rosie Klohs’ film, Sins of a Child, was published on the Moving Minds page on the Mental Illness Education ACT website.

Child Migrants, memories

The orphan who unorphaned himself

by Patrick O’Flaherty (guest author) on 1 July, 2011

Patrick O’Flaherty arrived in  Australia in 1947 thinking he was a war orphan and not knowing that his mother was alive in England. Read Patrick’s contribution to ‘Where’s the fair go? The decline of equity in Australia’, for more on his life in Australia, his shaky reunion with his mother and reconnecting with his family in Wales and Ireland.

Patrick was eight when he arrived on the SS Asturias.

Download Patrick’s ‘The orphan who unorphaned himself’ (PDF 262kb) from Where’s the Fair Go? The Decline of Equity in Australia, edited by Ian Rae and published by Delegate Productions Books in 2003.

articles/lectures, Child Migrants, documents, events, Forgotten Australians, Stolen Generations

Rally for children’s safety

by The Benevolent Society (guest author) on 21 April, 2011

Carolin Wenzel from The Benevolent Society lets us know about two current ways to support children’s safety. Members of the public are invited to suubmit their view to the Senate Inquiry into Family Law Legislation Amendment (Family Violence and Other Measures) Bill 2011 [Provisions]. There is also a Rally for Children’s Safety at Parliament House, Canberra, on Wednesday 25 May 2011.

Carolin Wenzel from The Benevolent Society writes:

I’m writing to let you know about two opportunities to support improving the Family Law Act to make it safer for children and parents who are victims of  domestic violence.

You have probably heard about the Senate Inquiry into the Government’s Family Law Legislation Amendment (Family Violence and Other Measures) Bill, which was introduced into the House of Representatives by Attorney-General Robert McClelland on March 24th.  Whilst this amendment is a positive step in the right direction,  The Senate Inquiry is an opportunity to present a case for further changes to protect children and their carers under threat of ongoing violence from an ex-partner.

It’s very important, once again to get as many strong submissions to this Inquiry as possible.  They won’t have any access to the submissions that were sent to the Attorney General in January. Submissions close on Friday April 29th – so please act now.

The other exciting development is that several groups are working together to hold a

Rally for Children’s Safety  at Parliament House Canberra on Wednesday May 25

Speakers lined up so far are:

  • Helen Cummings, author of “Blood Vows”
  • Dr Lesley Laing, author of the No Way to Live Report
  • Women’s Refuge Movement Executive Officer, Cat Gander
  • Benevolent Society CEO Richard Spencer
  • Bikers United Against Child Abuse

and we are working on several more, including parents who have harrowing experiences of poor parenting arrangement outcomes under the current Family Law Act.

We also feel it’s very important that the experiences and voices of children are a focus of this Rally.

We invite anyone who’s children have experienced trauma or feel unsafe about court imposed parenting arrangements to create a drawing or artwork respresenting how they feel, and to write a few words on another sheet of paper expressing their thoughts and feelings. They can just write their age (not their name so they are not identifiable)

If possible it would be great to laminate these and either bring them with you to the Rally or send them to me (address in signature below)

We would love you to come to the Rally, and The Benevolent Society is booking a bus to take up to 50 people from Sydney to leave early and be back in Sydney by 6pm that day.

We are working on an e-flyer and a place to link to info about the Rally online – so stay tuned for further updates.

Please pass on this message to anyone you think would be interested, and invite them to send me their email address so that I can include them in further updates.

I will ensure that individual emails are not revealed in any mail out.

Warm Regards,
Carolin Wenzel

Forgotten Australians

Canberra drop-in centre

by Rhonda Trivett (guest author) on 11 February, 2011

Forgotten Australian Rhonda Trivett helps to run the Fun Night at Havelock House, 85 Northbourne Ave, Turner, ACT, every Friday night at 7.30 pm until late. Tea, coffee, cordial and snacks are available. Come along, sings songs, watch a film, play table tennis, pool or board games. There is a free BBQ and karaoke. No drugs or alcohol. Forgotten Australians welcome.

Rhonda invites you:

I and my friend started it because there is a need out there for something to do. If you want to play pool or go to karaoke you have to go to a pub. There is nothing out there after hours. So that’s why I and my friend started this. There’s so many people hurting that need somewhere to go.

Forgotten Australians, memories, photography, photos

Apology from the Salvation Army

by Adele on 19 January, 2011

On 7 December, 2010, at Old Parliament House, Canberra, the international leader of The Salvation Army, General Shaw Clifton issued a national apology to former residents of Salvation Army Homes. The National Museum of Australia photographed some of those who attended the apology.

Click on photos to enlarge.