Brookton Cottage , Centrecare
Years of OperationFrom at least 1979, possibly earlier, for an unknown period.
Role Of FacilityFrom at least 1979, possibly earlier, for an unknown period.
Sponsoring AgencyCentrecare Children’s Cottages (subsequently, Djooraminda)
Brief HistoryThe WELSTAT (welfare statistics) Collection of 1979 notes “Brookton Cottage” as a ‘scattered group home’ (ie. “a family group home whose grounds do not adjoin those of another family group home, or other residential child care establishment, operated by the same enterprise.”) that was operated by an agency other than the Department.

Brookton was visited by the Chairman of the Consultative Committee on Residential Child Care in 1980. Cottage parents provided care for Aboriginal school-age children, not all of whom attended school.

In 1983, the Department’s Annual Report noted that Centrecare Children’s Cottages had “facilities in Northam, Beverley and Brookton in which care is provided by Aboriginal Cottage Parents for approximately 20 Aboriginal children. The children, mostly in sibling groups were referred from most areas throughout the southern part of the State involving local [Departmental] staff in a liaison capacity.” (Annual Report of the Department for Community Welfare, June 30th 1983).

“The label of ‘Centrecare kids’ seems to be unavoidable given the high level of visibility of these children in the small towns of Beverley and Brookton. This appears to be an important consideration in the planning of future cottage locations. Northam is a bigger centre and this may be more appropriate for future developments. The agency believes that a Northam based cottage for older children as training for independent living is a priority. The emphasis on liaison between Centrecare staff and the local schools has produced a very effective working relationship, and this together with peer group influence achieves a regular school attendance even though truancy was a primary factor in a number of the case histories of children at Centrecare.” (Report on the Activities of the Consultative Committee in 1984/85, Consultative Committee on Residential Child Care November 1985).

In 1986, the “children’s profile in small country schools” was “still a difficulty which is under consideration.” But it was possible for the agency to report by this time that all its direct care staff were Indigenous. (Report on the Activities of the Consultative Committee in 1985/86, Consultative Committee on Residential Child Care October 1986).

Djooraminda has its own entry in Signposts, and this should be consulted as it gives more information about the approach taken.
RecordsRecords for the Beverley Reception Centre run by Centrecare to assess and select children for placement in the cottages are held by Djooraminda [see entry and contact details below].
Some case records and admission registers for Djooraminda and possibly its earlier agencies may exist.
Departmental case records for young people placed by the Child Welfare Department or its successor agencies may reside with the Department for Child Protection.
AccessWhile access to records is restricted to protect the privacy of individuals, people are encouraged to enquire.
Contact DetailsThe Director, Djooraminda
36 Arbon Way, Lockridge WA 6054
PO Box 94, Beechboro WA 6935
Telephone: (08) 9378 2522
Facsimile: (08) 9378 1113

Freedom of Information
Department of Communities
Locked Bag 5000, Fremantle WA 6959
Telephone: (08) 6217 6888
Country free call: 1800 176 888