findingrecords.dhhs.vic.gov.au

Janefield (Colony 1937-62; Training Centre 1962-96)

Summary

  • Auspice: Department of Mental Hygiene, located in Chief Secretary's Department 1937-44; Department of Health I 1944-52; Mental Hygiene Authority 1952-62; Mental Health Authority 1962-78; Health Commission of Victoria 1978-85; Community Services Victoria 1985-92; Department of Health and Community Services 1992-96
  • Name: Janefield (Colony 1937-62; Training Centre 1962-96)

Summary

  • Auspice: Department of Mental Hygiene, located in Chief Secretary's Department 1937-44; Department of Health I 1944-52; Mental Hygiene Authority 1952-62; Mental Health Authority 1962-78; Health Commission of Victoria 1978-85; Community Services Victoria 1985-92; Department of Health and Community Services 1992-96
  • Name: Janefield (Colony 1937-62; Training Centre 1962-96)

Janefield Colony history in brief 


Janefield Training Centre: cover of a publication by Mental Health Authority, 1968

In October 1937, the Victorian Government opened Janefield Colony as a centre for children with intellectual disabilities, particularly children whose disability was severe. 

The Janefield Colony was located on the site of the Janefield Sanatorium, a training farm for tuberculosis patients, run by the Australian Red Cross Society from 1920 to 1933. The first children were transferred to Janefield from Kew Cottages in 1937.

Janefield was known as a ‘colony’ until 1962. 

In 1962, Janefield was situated on Plenty Road, Bundoora and became a training centre with a special school, farm, gymnasium and a family unit. 
In 1985, responsibility for Janefield transferred to the Office of Intellectual Disability Services, Community Services Victoria.

In 1996, Janefield residents were transferred to other services and the centre was closed. 

Note to Readers: There are collections in this guide that include both the Kingsbury and Janefield Training Centres. It is possible that Kingsbury and Janefield Training Centres centralised the administration of some of their administrative functions, like personnel and payroll. When the Kingsbury Training Centre closed, its records were transferred to Janefield. It is also possible some of the administrative collections from both facilities were then when maintained together.

Warning about distressing information

This guide contains information that some people may find distressing. If you experienced abuse as a child or young person in an institution mentioned in this guide, it may be a difficult reading experience. Guides may also contain references to previous views, policies and practices that are regrettable and do not reflect the current views, policies or practices of the department or the State of Victoria.  If you find this content distressing, please consult with a support person either from the Department of Health and Human Services or another agency.

Disclaimer

Please note that the content of this administrative history is provided for general information only and does not purport to be comprehensive. The department does not guarantee the accuracy of this administrative history. For more information on the history of child welfare in Australia, see Find & Connect.


Janefield Farm: farm buildings and equipment with trees in the background

Source

  • PROV VA 2847 Janefield (Colony 1937–62; Training Centre 1962–96)  
  • Find and Connect, Janefield Colony (1937–96) 
  • Victorian Government gazette, 6 July 1932, p. 1520 [description of land proposed to be reserved as a site for the Janefield Colony for treatment of mental defectives]
  • Victorian Government gazette, 27 October 1937, p. 3399 [proclaimed wards B and C of Janefield Colony to be a Mental Hospital]
  • Victorian Government gazette, 25 May 1938, p. 1541 [proclamation to include Ward A as part of the Janefield Colony mental hospital]
  • Victorian Government gazette, 16 May 1945, p. 1303 [proclamation to include the Farm Workers Block described as the “Boys Block” as part of the Janefield Colony mental hospital]
  • Victorian Government gazette, 1 December 1948, p. 7208 [proclamation to include the Nursery Block as part of the Janefield Colony mental hospital]
  • Victorian Government gazette, 31 October 1962, p. 3636–37 [proclaimed Janefield Training Centre defined as wards B and C and the Boys’ Ward]
  • Victorian Government gazette, 27 November 1968, p. 3855 [proclamation reinstates whole of site as a training centre]
  • Victorian Government gazette, 2 December 1999, p. 2538 [revoked proclamation of Janefield Training Centre]

Reviewed 29 August 2016