Bamburra Hostel opened in 1970 in Yokine. It was for Aboriginal teenage girls from remote areas attending high school and other education and training, although from 1994 (or possibly earlier) boys were also admitted. Bamburra was run by the Churches of Christ Federal Aborigines Mission Board from 1970 to 1984. Since then it has been run by the government departments responsible for child welfare. Bambura remained open in 2013.
Bamburra Hostel opened in 1970 in Yokine for Aboriginal teenage girls from remote areas to stay during the school year so they could attend high school and other education and training. It was run by the Churches of Christ Federal Aborigines Mission Board from 1970 to 1984. In 1984, Bamburra was transferred to the Department for Community Welfare. Boys were admitted to Bamburra from 1994, possibly earlier.
Bamburra Hostel was run by the Churches of Christ from 1970 until 1984 under a formal agreement with the Department of Community Welfare, providing for girls attending secondary schooling and tertiary studies. Officials from the Churches of Christ Federal Aborigines Mission Board (CCFAMB) reported in 2004 that Bamburra accommodated female students from all parts of Western Australia, most of whom were in receipt of Commonwealth Secondary Grants. It was a policy of the CCFAMB that these young people kept up regular contact their families and returned home for school holidays.
In 1975, Bamburra Hostel was described as providing short term care for 'secondary school girls in a hostel-like setting', the average length of stay being nine months. The hostel at this time was reported as being a brick building that was 'integrated into the community'. Bamburra Hostel had a garden with a swimming pool, seven bedrooms (five doubles and two bedrooms which could sleep three or more girls), a lounge room, dining room, four bathrooms and toilets; and various amenities including television and piano. The young people walked or took a bus to their schools and home lunches were provided. Holiday activities included camping trips. (Department of Child Welfare Submission to the Committee of Enquiry into Residential Child Care, July 1976, reported in Signposts, 2004).
The CCFAMB ceased managing Bamburra Hostel from 1984 and the Department for Community Development assumed responsibility.
In October 1994, the Department for Community Development reported that there were 7 boys aged 15-18+ years resident at Bamburra House and the length of stay ranged from 1 week to more than 6 months. Bamburra remained open in 2013.
Sources used to compile this entry: To Remove and Protect: Aboriginal Lives Under Control [website], 2010, https://aiatsis.gov.au/collection/featured-collections/remove-and-protect; Bamburra exterior [Image], Date: 1970s; 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, http://signposts.cpfs.wa.gov.au/pdf/pdf.aspx; State Records Taskforce, Government of Western Australia, Looking West: A Guide to Aboriginal Records in Western Australia, Government of Western Australia, 2004, http://lookingwest.cpfs.wa.gov.au/; Interview conducted by Debra Rosser with Avon and Deslee Moyle, Duncraig, on 15 April 2014 regarding Bamburra Hostel (1970 - ).
Prepared by: Debra Rosser
Created: 15 March 2011, Last modified: 7 November 2018