The Historic Abuse Network Memorial, also known as the Child Abuse Memorial, was unveiled in Brisbane, Queensland in 2004 and is now located at Emma Miller Place, Roma Street, Central Brisbane. The bronze, life-size statue of a barefooted boy, with tattered suitcase in hand, was sculpted by Gavan Fenelon. The inscription reads:
In memory of all the children who suffered and of those who did not survive abuse in Church and State Children’s institutions and homes in Queensland. “For there is nothing hidden, except that it should be made known, neither was anything made secret out that it should come to light.”
HAN and SOICA gratefully acknowledge the support and assistance of the Brisbane City Council and Queensland Council, Department of Communities.
The NSW Government held a healing service in Sydney’s Royal Botanic Gardens on 19 September 2009, with more than 700 people who grew up in institutions, orphanages, children’s homes and foster homes in NSW attending. The service included the unveiling of a lasting memorial within the gardens to commemorate the experiences of the Forgotten Australians. The memorial is a stone plinth at the Twin Ponds site in the Gardens. The inscription reads:
For Forgotten Australians
In this place, we remember the many thousands of NSW children who grew up in care in the decades leading up to the 1990s – in orphanages, in Children’s Homes and foster homes,
in institutions. We remember the lonely, the frightened, the lost, the abused – those who never knew the joy of a loving family, who suffered too often at the hands of a system meant to provide for their safety and wellbeing. We rejoice in their courage and strength. This corner of the Gardens is dedicated to their memory. Erected by the Australian and NSW Governments
- 19 September 2009
The South Australian Memorial to the Forgotten Australians was unveiled on 17 June in Peace Park at the corner of Sir Edwin Smith Avenue and Brougham Place (opposite the Women’s and Children’s Hospital). It consists of four huge stainless steel daisies, each in a different state of opening, as a symbol of hope and healing for children (now adults) who suffered harm in out of home care. The tallest of the daisies is over 6 metres and can be seen from quite a distance.
The concept was developed by artist Craige Andrae, who was inspired by his love and hopes for his own small children. The dedication on the memorial reads:
In honour of children who suffered abuse in institutional and out of home care. We have grown though awareness and unity. We celebrate our courage, strength and resilience. We are no longer forgotten. Dedicated to the future protection and nurturing of all children.
- 17 June 2010
The memorial was unveiled by several children of former state wards at a moving ceremony which was attended by about 200 people, many of whom had been abused in care. The Hon Gail Gago MLC officiated at the ceremony on behalf of the Minister for Families and Communities.
The Victorian memorial was unveiled on 25 October 2010. Standing on Southbank Promenade, next to the river, it was created by artist Helen Bodycomb. The plaque accompanying the memorial reads as follows:
World within, world without (2010) by Helen Bodycomb
This artwork reflects the constellations above Victoria at 11am on 16 November 2009, when Prime Minister Kevin Rudd made his national apology to the ’Forgotten Australians’. Wattle blossoms represent the one thousand most visible stars and planets, one for every one hundred children who were in Victorian state care. Here we remember those thousands of children who were separated from their families and grew up or spent time in Victorian orphanages, children’s homes and foster homes last century. Many were frightened, abused and neglected. We acknowledge the many shattered lives and the courage and strength of those who survived. Unveiled 25th October 2010 and developed with the support of the Australian and Victorian Governments and the City of Melbourne.”
The unveiling was followed by an afternoon tea. The memorial recognises all Victorian Forgotten Australians who, as children, spent time in Victorian orphanages, children’s homes or foster care during the last century. It is a lasting recognition of the experience of care leavers, and provides an opportunity for the wider community to reflect on the experiences of Forgotten Australians.
The WA memorial to Forgotten Australians was unveiled on 10 December 2010. Standing on the grassed area in front of the Western Australian Museum’s Jubilee Building, Perth Cultural Centre, James Street, Perth, the memorial was jointly funded by the Western Australian and Federal governments. It was created by local artist Judith Forrest, in collaboration with author Terri-ann White. Modelled on a children's fortune-telling game made of folded paper, it shows lines as if from an old exercise book, and the corners and flaps bear the words of Forgotten Australians themselves about their experiences and their present situations. The inscription reads:
This memorial is jointly funded by the Western Australian and Commonwealth Governments and is dedicated to all Western Australians who experienced institutional or out-of-home care as children.
This memorial brings the “Forgotten Australians” out of the shadows and into the light. Their most enduring legacy will be that the people now and in the future will know their stories and build upon them a platform for better care.
There is a strong thread that links the way a child is raised with the person they become in adulthood. This memorial stands as a reminder of that thread to all who create policies that affect children.