St Vincent's Girls' Orphanage - South Melbourne, Victoria

Black and white photo of St Vincent's girls orphanage playground 1930s.

1861 - St Vincent de Paul’s Girls Orphanage
After taking responsibility for the orphanage at Emerald Hill at the request of the Bishop, Mother Ursula Frayne spoke compellingly to the Royal Commission seeking assistance for appropriate facilities for the children in her care. Construction commenced at South Melbourne on a separate orphanage for girls.

1962 - St Vincent de Paul’s Children’s Home
The new name reflected more accurately the service offered. The majority of young residents were not orphans and the male siblings of girls at St Vincent’s were brought to join their sisters.

1966 - St Vincent de Paul’s Children’s Home, Black Rock
The property at Black Rock had been mainly used as a holiday home. It now provided an administration centre for the children’s services offered to those who had previously lived at South Melbourne and who were now accommodated in family group homes. This was a significant change from the institutional type of care that had been offered until the 1960s.

1992 - St Vincent de Paul’s Child and Family Service, Black Rock
This new name was appropriate for the agency as the services offered included many varieties of assistance for the families of the children in the family group homes.