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Page history last edited by Social Policy Library 1 year, 8 months ago


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1981 1982 1983 1984 1985198619871988 1989 


Community Issues 

After an approach from a Carlton self-help group of Ministry of Housing residents, the Brotherhood provided a project worker to assist the Carlton Community Milk Bar Cooperative establish their business. [1]


Eric Hart Activities Centre (including a hydrotherapy pool) opened at St Laurence Park, Lara in June [2]


Millott House officially opened by the Anglican Archbishop of Melbourne (Most Revd David Penman) on 9 May 1985 [3] 


Employment & Training 

Equal Opportunity Consultative Committee established, supported and resourced by the Affirmative Employment Unit.  Membership was predominantly front-line workers, with two volunteers and with the Director of Community Services representing the management. [4] 


BSL continued to support the Fitzroy and ARC Credit Union by providing a salary and free rental. [5]  


Fundraising & Resources  

Build a mile of clothing for the Brotherhood appeal was run again in February by the Australian Institute of Dry Cleaners.  The appeal concluded with "Brotherhood Week" at the Chadstone Shopping Centre from February 25 to March 1.[6] 


Cellist Otti Veit and pianist May Clifford gave a fundraising recital for the Brotherhood on Sunday 16 June in a private home in Toorak  Millott_House_development_1983-1985.pdf


Fortunis Auxiliary, formed in 1957 in the North Balwyn area, disbanded after 28 years of fundraising effort, though the members remained involved. The Koonung Auxiliary, many of whom were friends of the Fortunis Group began in 1964 in the Bulleen area, also disbanded.  The Ivanhoe Auxiliary shop had benefited from the support of both groups.  [7]


The Voluntary Helpers' Shop in Camberwell, which had supported the five major denominations with funds for building accommodation for the aged over its thirty-two years, closed through lack of volunteers. The Brotherhood had received $658,000 over the years for projects including Sumner House, Sambell Lodge, Keble Court and the Group Housing Project. [8] 


Material & Financial Support 

In the Financial Year 1984-1985, eleven thousand people used the Material Aid Service [9] 


BSL established the Community Buying Advisory Service (CBAS) funded by the BSL and the Victorian Government to help people get the best values and prices on household goods.  Seeing the need for low-priced fridges, CBAS staff helped set up a fridge refurbishing program funded by the Victorian Government’s Community Employment Program (initial funding until February 1986).


Resources and support provided to the collective of low income food cooperatives to establish a food cooperative warehouse and resource centre, with the hope of State Government funding under its anti-poverty program. [10] 

Twenty-eight independent groups were supported financially by the Brotherhood. [11] 


Older people 

Following its conversion to a rooming house for 22 people, the historic St Mary's Mission House in Fitzroy Street, Fitzroy was re-named Millott House and dedicated by the Anglican Archbishop of Melbourne (Most Revd David Penman) on 9 May. [12]  Millott_House_development_1983-1985.pdf


Dr Deborah Zinn, an American on a year's placement with the BSL's Social Policy & Research Department, was seconded one day per week for nine months to teach and advise at Micro-Energy.  This was a non-profit company set up by a group of women, with funding from the Victorian Department of Employment & Industrial Affairs, to provide free computer training courses for disadvantaged groups such as women re-entering the labour market.  The Brotherhood's Micro-Energy Project selected and supported five "motivated and enthusiastic" young women considered disadvantaged enough to be unlikely to access the labour market without undertaking a labour market program.  Deborah also acted as research consultant to a group of women in Cobram who were doing a project looking at country women and the labour market. [13]


Brotherhood invited to participate in the National Tax Summit - the first time a welfare organisation had been invited to take part. [14]  


Eric Hart Activities Centre (including physiotherapy, occupational and speech therapy, podiatry and a hydrotherapy pool) built to provide services for older and disabled people from the Park and the local community was opened at St Laurence Park, Lara on 30 June. [15] Eric_Hart_Centre_Opening_Lara_1985-6-30.pdf


At Carinya nursing home in Box Hill the four-roomed staff flat was converted into independent accommodation units, with one or two available for respite care, a step between shared housing such as the Brotherhood’s Group Housing Project and hostel accommodation. [16] 


Organisational aspects (BSL) 

Draft policy regarding the role and work of volunteers at the Brotherhood of St Laurence prepared by the Strategic Planning Committee & the Equal Opportunity Consultative Committee (July) [17]BSL_Volunteers_Draft_Policy_1985-8-2.pdf 



Eric Hart retired in September from the Brotherhood after 27 years of involvement, beginning with his attendance at the 1958 public meeting in Geelong held to form a Council to develop St Laurence Park, Lara.  At that time a real estate agent, he became deeply involved, first as an advisor and then as a Council member.  In 1975 he became Executive Officer responsible for the Park settlement with over 200 residents and for the Geelong Donated Goods Division which supported the Park.  [18]Eric_Hart_Retirement_1985-9-30.pdf


Bishop Peter Hollingworth was awarded the Rostrum Victoria Award of Merit for 1985, which recognises an individual who in the judgement of Rostrum Victoria has been an outstanding communicator.  [19] 


Presentations & publications  

The 55th Foundation Festival Eucharist and the fifth G.T. Sambell Memorial Oration were held on 8 December, coinciding to the day with the founding of the Brotherhood.  David Scott, the founder’s nephew, delivered the Sambell Oration: Ancient laws and dilemmas [20] 


A twenty-minute documentary film The Brotherhood of St Laurence, made by Erwin Rado, with Keith & Alison Head and Dyranda Prevost, was launched in July by Phillip Adams  [21]  BSL_Documentary_Film_1985.pdf


Publications included:

  • Half a Chance – Justin McDermott.  An evaluation of the Northcote Accommodation Project set up by the BSL with the Melbourne Diocese of the Anglican Church (See 1981) [22] 
  • Caring: The commitment and the costs – Jenny Trethewey.  This was based on interviews of the carers of twenty-one confused elderly people about their experience of caring. [23] 

Young people 

The BSL and Community Aid Abroad offered a poverty education program for Year 11 & 12 students who had chosen Poverty as one of their elective subjects in English or Economics.  The program, coordinated by Mark Sawers, looked at poverty in Australia or the Third World, or both.  Students were able to visit the BSL's headquarters in Fitzroy in groups of up to 30, choosing from videos, discussion groups, audio-visuals, and a simulation game, as well as written material and a photographic exhibition.  The visits aimed at stimulating students in their studies and creating an awareness and understanding of the issues of concern to the two organisations.  [24] 



Federal Budget saw a 26% cut in emergency relief grants from the Commonwealth Department of Social Security in the 1985/86 funding period.


G K Tucker Settlement, Carrum Downs, celebrated its 50th anniversary; an anniversary service was held in October[25]   


Peter Hollingworth invited to head the Tax Monitoring Authority proposed by the Federal Government to ensure low-income groups not harmed by tax changes.  However, as a result of the government’s withdrawal from its broad-based consumption tax proposal, that Authority was no longer required.   [26]   Hollingworth_&_Tax_Monitoring_Authority_1985.pdf

Visitors to this page:


  1. BSL Annual Report 1984-1985 p.3
  2. BSL Annual Report 1984-1985 p.6. See also < http://www.stlaurence.org.au/about_history.asp> (19 Feb 2009)
  3. BSL Annual Report 1984-1985 p.5
  4. BSL Annual Report 1984-1985 p.20
  5. BSL Annual Report 1984-1985 p.7
  6. Brotherhood Action February 1985 (No.257) p.4 (no numbering); BSL Annual Report 1984-1985 p.11.
  7. BSL Annual Report 1984-1985 p.11
  8. Brotherhood Action December 1985 (No.261A) p.3 (no numbering)
  9. BSL Annual Report 1984-1985 p.3
  10. BSL Annual Report 1984-1985 p.3
  11. Brotherhood Action December 1985 (No.261A) p.2 (no numbering)
  12. Brotherhood Action December 1983 (No.250) p.1 and June 1985 (No.259) p.4 (no numbering). Also BSL Annual Report 1984-1985 p.5. Mrs Jessica Millott was a former Manageress of the BSL's Coolibah Club who had worked as a volunteer and staff member for 29 years. [Millott_House_development_1983-1985.pdf]
  13. Brotherhood Action February 1986 (No.263) p.2 (no numbering); BSL Annual Report 1985-1986 p.7 and BSL Annual Report 1986-1987 p.10. Christian Grieves & Helen MacDonald "The Body Shop Linked Access Project - An evaluation" p.3, Brotherhood of St Laurence 1995 (BSL Library 331.342592 GRI)
  14. BSL Annual Report 1984-1985 p.9
  15. Brotherhood Action August 1985 (No.260) p.1; BSL Annual Report 1984-1985 p.6. See also (19 Feb 2009) [Eric_Hart_Centre_Opening_Lara_1985-6-30.pdf]
  16. Brotherhood Action October 1985 (No.261) pp.1-2 (no numbering)
  17. David Green (Director, Community Services) to Staff & Volunteers (2 August 1985) [BSL_Volunteers_Draft_Policy_1985-8-2.pdf]
  18. Brotherhood Action April 1985 (No.258) p.2 (no numbering) and October 1985 (No.261) p.2 (no numbering) [Eric_Hart_Retirement_1985-9-30.pdf]
  19. Brotherhood Action December 1985 (No.261A) p.3 (no numbering)
  20. Brotherhood Action December 1985 (No.261A) p.3 (no numbering). At this time David Scott was the former Executive Director of the Brotherhood of St Laurence, former Director and National Chairman and a member of the National Executive of Community Aid Abroad, and Chairman of the Land Conservation Council.
  21. Brotherhood Action June 1985 (No.259) p.3 (no numbering); Brotherhood Action August 1985 (No.260) p.2 (no numbering); BSL Annual Report 1984-1985 p.11 [BSL_Documentary_Film_1985.pdf]
  22. Justin McDermott, "Half a chance: the evaluation of the Northcote Accommodation Project", (BSL Library 362.73 MCD). Brotherhood Action June 1985 (No.259) p.3 (No numbering)
  23. Jenny Trethewey "Caring: the commitment and the costs". (BSL Library DEM 362.6 TRE). Brotherhood Action June 1985 (No.259) pp.1-2 (no numbering)
  24. Brotherhood Action June 1985 (No.259) p.4 (no numbering)
  25. BSL Annual Report 1984-1985 p.6; BSL Annual Report 1985-1986 p.5
  26. Brotherhood Action August 1985 (No.260) p.2 (no numbering); BSL Annual Report 1984-1985 p.9 [Hollingworth_&_Tax_Monitoring_Authority_1985.pdf]

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