The term 'babies' Home' generally refers to institutions for children under the age of three. In the nineteenth century, such institutions were often known as infant asylums. Some of the more well-known babies' Homes in Victoria were actually not officially named in this way. Bethany Babies' Home in Geelong was the Geelong Female Refuge until 1928. The institution at Berry Street was not officially a 'babies' Home' until 1964. The official name of the Broadmeadows Babies' Home was St Joseph's Foundling Hospital. These institutions were usually associated with services for unmarried mothers, and often functioned (officially or not) as adoption agencies. Staff in babies' Homes were usually trained nurses. Some institutions also provided training for mothercraft nurses.
Sources used to compile this entry: Tierney, Leonard, Children Who Need Help, Melbourne University Press, Melbourne, 1963.
Prepared by: Cate O'Neill
Created: 7 April 2011, Last modified: 22 December 2016