Skip to content

This website uses words, photos and objects from people who spent time growing up in children’s homes, orphanages and other ‘care’ institutions.

These pages feature personal contributions to the National Museum of Australia’s Inside exhibition. They tell only a small part of each person’s story.


Exhibition graphic panel that reads: 'We did create some sort of brotherhood', attributed to 'Ron, Box Hill Boys’ Home, Box Hill, Victoria, 1960s'.

Margaret Shields

Exhibition graphic panel that reads: 'An arm or a hand would receive a sharp rap with a whippy stick ... Talking in the dining room was not permitted either', attributed to 'Margaret Shields, Glastonbury Orphanage, Geelong, Victoria, 1950s, 'The Way it Was', Glastonbury Child and Family Service, 1995'.

Shirley Steans Beaumont

Exhibition graphic panel that reads: 'I’ve longed to belong to a family and that’s the reason behind all this [reunion]; we were all like one big family and were all like sisters', attributed to 'Shirley Steans Beaumont, 'The Age', 10 April 2006'.

Owen Swallow

'Bunny Club' map courtesy Owen Swallow, Yarra View Training Farm, Lilydale, Victoria, 1960s. The red crosses show where boys would hide from paedophile Brothers. the boys said they belonged to the 'Bunny Club' because they knew where to hide. Dormitories 2 and 3 held the orphaned and mentally disabled boys. This was where most abuse occurred.
Return to Top