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THE SOUTHWARK DIOCESAN COUNCIL FOR WEL-CARE


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Reference ACC/2201
Covering dates 1894 - 1985
Held by London Metropolitan Archives
Extent 80 series
Creators Southwark Diocesan Council for Wel-care, 1970-; Rochester Diocesan Association for the Care of Friendless Girls, 1894-1905; Southwark Diocesan Association for the Care of Friendless Girls, 1905-1914; Southwark Diocesan Association for Preventive and Rescue Work, 1914-1932; Southwark Diocesan Council for Moral Welfare, 1932-1970
Arrangement A. DIOCESAN COUNCIL
Executive Committee minute books 1895 - 1904
Council minute books 1904 - 1964
Finance Committee minute books 1904 - 1922
Executive, later Executive and Finance Committee minute books 1917 - 1972
Sub-Committee minute book 1911 - 1912
B DIOCESAN OFFICE
POLICY AND INFORMATION
Illegitimate Children 1914 - 1976
Juvenile Offenders 1907 - 1932
Mentally Handicapped 1913 - 1934
Sexual Offences 1925 - 1934; 1976
Ethnic Minorities 1955 - 1962
Mother and Baby Homes 1957 - 1964
Housing 1966 - 1977
Moral Welfare Work 1934 - 1947
The Church and Social Services 1960 - 1976
FINANCE AND ORGANISATION
Constitution 1932 - 1953
Finance 1919 - 1972
Central Home 1903 - 1976
Lewisham Association 1941 - 1951
Putney Home 1955 - 1976
Stretton House 1960 - 1977
Cooperation with other voluntary agencies 1920 - 1979
Annual reports of local associations 1933 - 1935; 1959/60 - 1982
EMPLOYMENT AND TRAINING OF STAFF
General papers 1930 - [c1979]
Personnel records 1933 - 1976
Southwark Diocesan Board of Women's Work: files on Moral Welfare Workers 1922 - 1965
Papers of Miss Eilidh MacDougall 1895 - 1954
C LONDON AND SOUTHWARK DIOCESAN MORAL EDUCATION COMMITTEE
Ledger 1957 - 1958
D DIOCESAN MEDICAL HOME
Committee minute books 1909 - 1919; 1929 - 1935
Admission register 1931 - 1935
E STRETTON HOUSE (DIOCESAN MATERNITY HOME; FROM 1946 DIOCESAN MOTHER AND BABY HOME)
Annual meetings minute books 1935 - 1976
General Committee minute books 1918 - 1977
House Committee minute books 1930 - 1943
Annual Reports 1935/6 - 1976 (with gaps)
Case records 1969 - 1976
Staff records 1965 - 1976
Financial records 1973 - 1976
F SOUTH LONDON ASSOCIATION FOR THE MORAL WELFARE OF CHILDREN
General Committee minute books 1914 - 1950
Executive Committee minute books 1923 - 1950
Annual reports 1924 - 1949/50
Correspondence 1949 - 1950
G GREENWICH ASSOCIATION
Annual Reports 1958/9 - 1982
Files 1969 - 1974
Financial records 1948 - 1977
H LAMBETH ASSOCIATION
LAMBETH MORAL WELFARE ASSOCIATION
Annual meetings minute books 1906 - 1907; 1920 - 1947
Council minute book 1953 - 1964
Executive Committee minute books 1895 - 1943
Patrol Committee minute book [1914] - 1916
Ladies Committee minute books 1920 - 1929
Annual reports 1895 - 1959/60 (with gaps)
Index cards to case files c1940 - 1966
Petty cash books 1931 - 1937; 1956 - 1964
LAMBETH HOME
Committee minute books 1893 - 1932
Annual reports and papers 1910 - 1932
BATTERSEA MORAL WELFARE ASSOCIATION
Executive Committee minute book 1911 - 1919
Outdoor Work Committee minute books 1929 - 1939
TOOTING AND CLAPHAM BRANCH
Executive Committee and Council minute book 1935 - 1945
BATTERSEA, CLAPHAM AND BRIXTON (FROM 1964 LAMBETH, BATTERSEA, CLAPHAM AND BRIXTON) MORAL WELFARE ASSOCIATION
Executive Committee minute book 1961 - 1965
Cashbook 1951 - 1956
STREATHAM AND DISTRICT MORAL WELFARE ASSOCIATION
Annual reports 1954/5 - 1963/4 (with gaps)
Cash book 1963 - 1965
LAMBETH COUNCIL FOR WEL-CARE
Council minute book 1965 - 1971
Executive Committee minute book 1965 - 1972
H LAMBETH ASSOCIATION (Cont'd)
ST. MARY'S HOUSE
Plans and specifications 1969
List of records 1980
Admission Register 1957 - 1965
Case papers 1964 - 1985
J LEWISHAM ASSOCIATION
SYDENHAM FRIENDLESS GIRLS' ASSOCIATION
General Committee minute books 1895 - 1919
K SOUTHWARK AND CAMBERWELL ASSOCIATION
CAMBERWELL AND DULWICH ASSOCIATION FOR MORAL WELFARE
Minute books 1918 - 1965
SOUTHWARK, BERMONDSEY AND NEWINGTON MORAL WELFARE ASSOCIATION
Bermondsey and Rotherhithe Branch Committee minute book
1918 - 1922
Southwark and Newington Council and Committee minute book
1932 - 1937
Annual Reports 1929 - 1965
Bermondsey case book 1946 - 1958
SOUTHWARK AND CAMBERWELL MORAL WELFARE ASSOCIATION
Workers' reports 1966 - 1969
L WANDSWORTH ASSOCIATION
WANDSWORTH COUNCIL FOR WEL-CARE
Files 1953 - 1976
Battersea case books 1960 - 1974
Adoption files 1941 - 1978
Petty cash books 1960 - 1966
PUTNEY HOME
Correspondence 1955 - 1959
Case papers 1963 - 1968
M REFERENCE COLLECTION
Abortion and Contraception 1965 - 1975
Mother and Baby Homes 1964 - 1972
Adoption and Fostering 1920 - 1982
One Parent Families [c1932] - 1978
Child Care 1925 - [1980]
Housing 1962 - 1981
Social Security 1966 - 1974
Juvenile Offenders 1908 - 1973
Handicapped 1959 - 1974
Ethnic Minorities 1965 - 1977
Moral Welfare Work 1947 - 1970
Social Work 1954 - 1973
The Church, Psychiatry and Social Work 1960 - [1982]


Administrative history:
Southwark Wel-Care was founded in April 1894 as the Rochester Diocesan Association for the Care of Friendless Girls. At that date the present Diocese of Southwark formed part of the Diocese of Rochester. Its object was to endeavour to link together the various associations, homes, and workers engaged in penitentiary and rescue work throughout the Diocese and to start new efforts where required. Helpers, both paid and voluntary, were needed. Outdoor work was carried out by paid trained rescue workers responsible to the local Ladies' Executive Committee "who visit girls in their own lodgings, in the common lodging houses, and houses of ill repute". Many of the local associations ran maternity homes and refuges. No. 125 Kennington Road was acquired on lease in 1903 as a "Central Home". It housed the Diocesan Office and provided accommodation for rescue workers, and training facilities for ladies interested in rescue work. Local associations were responsible for collecting and expending their own funds, but many could not exist without help from the Central Association.
In October 1904, a new constitution was adopted. The two central committees, one of men and one of women, were replaced by a Council. In 1905 the Diocese of Southwark was created from the western part of the Diocese of Rochester. Accordingly in May 1905 the Rochester Diocesan Association for the Care of Friendless Girls was dissolved and then immediately reformed as the Southwark Diocesan Association for the Care of Friendless Girls. In May 1914 its name was changed to the Southwark Diocesan Association for Preventive and Rescue Work.
Two diocesan homes were directly responsible to Council. The Diocesan Medical Home was founded at Woolwich in 1913 for the treatment of young girls suffering from venereal disease. It moved in 1918 to 80 Stockwell Park Road and closed in 1935. The Diocesan Maternity Home was opened in 1928 at Stretton House, Grove Park. It was evacuated during the War to Limpsfield, Surrey and returned to Grove Park in 1946 as the Diocesan Mother and Baby Home. It closed in 1976. Other homes were run by local associations.
The Diocesan Association adopted a new constitution in 1915 whereby representatives elected by local branches came onto the council. In February 1932 it changed its name again to the Southwark Diocesan Association for Moral Welfare.
A major reorganisation of the local associations took place in 1965 to bring them in line with the new London Boroughs. In 1970 the name Southwark Diocesan Council for Wel-Care was adopted.
The nature of the work of Southwark Wel-Care has changed considerably over the years. At first its aims were to help and to restore the mothers of illegitimate children, to rescue prostitutes and to save young women who were in danger of being led astray. In 1914 a special branch of the association was formed in order to help children in moral difficulty. This was known as the South London Committee for the Protection of Children, later the South London Association for the Moral Welfare of Children. Its work was transferred to the LCC Education Committee in 1950.
By 1934 more emphasis was being placed on the welfare of illegitimate children including the advisability of adoption in certain cases. The bulk of the work was concerned with assisting mothers during their pregnancy and confinement and helping them to support and bring up their child afterwards. Unless the mother was able to return to her own parents or to take her baby with her when she went into service, many children had to be placed with foster mothers. The number of adoptions increased after the Second World War reaching a peak in the 1960s, followed by a dramatic decline.
Official concern over the increased number of illegitimate births during the War was expressed in the Home Office Circular 2866 of October 1943. This requested local authorities to assist voluntary agencies caring for illegitimate children and their mothers. The social legislation of 1946-1948 did not provide services specifically for unmarried mothers and their children other than certain medical and maternity care which was given to all mothers.
In many areas including London, local authorities gave grants to assist Diocesan councils for moral welfare and worked in close co-operation with them. From 1971 assistance for one parent families came within the responsibilities of the new local authority social services departments.
In 1975 the object of Southwark Wel-Care was defined as being to promote the welfare of one parent families and other families with similar problems. Its provision took the form of casework service, mother and baby homes, and housing projects such as flatlets for unsupported mothers.
A considerable influence on the work of Southwark Wel-Care has been exercised by the successive organising secretaries, the principal official based at the Diocesan Office. In 1971 this post became that of Director. The following women have held this position.
Miss Frances Hogg 1894 - 1912
Miss H.M. Morris 1912 - 1924
Miss S. E. Pinney 1925 - 1928
Miss Lila Retallack 1929 - 1934
Miss K. Bromhead 1934 - 1951
Miss M. A. V. Raynes 1951 - 1964
Miss Phillis Thomas 1964 - 1971
DIRECTORS
Miss Phillis Thomas 1971-1976
Miss Janet Evanson 1976-
Miss June Simpson


Contents:
The records which have been deposited here include minute books of the Diocesan Council and its Committees, files, papers and part of a library collection from the Diocesan Office, records of the two Diocesan homes, and of the local associations for Inner London. Most local associations have not retained case papers for more than twenty one years at the most. The only case files deposited here are adoption files for the Wandsworth Association for 1941 - 1978, case papers for St Mary's House for 1964 1985 and case files for the Putney Home for Mothers and Babies 1963 1968 and case files for Caterham and Godstone Deaneries for the 1960s-1980s.
There is unrestricted access to all published material including annual reports. Case books, case files, personnel files and minute books and files containing confidential information relating to individuals are closed. Permission to consult these records may be requested from the Director of Southwark Wel-Care. Minute books, files and other records which do not contain confidential information relating to individuals are closed for 30 years.




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