Meerindoo Youth Accommodation Service (1977–current)


  • Auspice: Gippsland and East Gippsland Aboriginal Co-operative
  • Title or name: Meerindoo Youth Accommodation Service, Meerindoo Hostel
  • Address: 114 Day Street, Bairnsdale

Meerindoo Youth Accommodation Service history in brief

In 1972, Meerindoo Hostel was established in Bairnsdale to enable Aboriginal students without ready access to secondary schools to continue their education. Seven students, aged from 12-17, lived at the hostel, which was run as a family home with foster parents.

Meerindoo is run by the Gippsland and East Gippsland Aboriginal Co-operative. Today it takes in all young people who need a place to live, mostly because they are dealing with family breakdowns. Most are non-Indigenous.

Young people can stay at Meerindoo for about 12 weeks. While there, they get help with basic living skills (shopping, cooking, washing, budgeting, navigating Centrelink and Medicare).

In 2016, Meerindoo Youth Accommodation Services in Bairnsdale remains the only crisis accommodation service for young people in Gippsland's east.

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.


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 & ConnectExternal Link .


Annual Report, Victorian Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs, 1971–72. Link
ABC Gippsland: Link

List of records held by the department

For information relating to the central management of care leavers and wards of state, please consult the guide to Central department wardship and out-of-home care records. These collections date back to the 1860s and include ward registers, index cards and ward files.

Departmental administration

Voluntary children’s homes files (c.1930–c.85)

File; Permanent (VPRS Number 18069 / P0002)

Content: The files record interaction between the various voluntary homes and the government. This filing system was created in 1975, combining earlier correspondence and other records to create one system with VH prefixes.

The specific file relating to this home is dated 1977–83 and includes:

File VH-130:

  • payments for wards in Aboriginal hostels, 1977
  • correspondence regarding named wards, 1983
  • file note, regarding benevolent funding, 1983
  • application and approval for declaration as an approved children’s home, Meerindoo Hostel, 114 Day Street, Bairnsdale, 1983
  • correspondence regarding funding arrangements, 1983

Reviewed 31 August 2016