Select Committee on Health Minutes of Evidence



— 1986  First request from former Child Migrant in Australia.

— 1987  First reunion in England between mother and daughter.

— 1987  Margaret Humphreys' research visits to Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne.

— 1987  Child Migrants Trust established.

— 1987  Articles published in Observer newspaper.

— 1987  Director seconded to CMT from Nottinghamshire County Council.

— 1988  Research visits to Canada and Zimbabwe by Margaret Humphreys.

— 1988  Visit to Australia by Margaret Humphreys and David Spicer, Barrister and Trustee of the Child Migrants Trust.

— 1988  Filming for Granada's documentary "Lost Children of the Empire".

— 1989  Transmission in the UK of "Lost Children of the Empire" and publication of a book of the same name

— 1989  Thousands of calls received on Help Lines following documentary screening of "Lost Children of the Empire"

— 1989  "Lost Children of the Empire" transmitted in Australia. Director appeared on the Peter Couchman current affairs programme before an invited audience of former Child Migrants including, David Hill, then Director General of the ABC.

— 1989  Three members of the Child Migrants Trust UK team travelled to Australia to staff the Help Lines following the transmission. Again, hundreds of calls were received from very distressed and angry former Child Migrants in Australia. Many were sobbing down the telephone, relating their accounts of physical and sexual abuse.

— 1990  CMT receives one year grant from the Department of Health in the UK.

— 1990  CMT receives three year grant from the Australian Government, Department of Immigration and Ethnic Affairs.

— 1990  29 June—CMT officially opens its first UK office.

— 1991  CMT opens office in Melbourne, VIC and appoints qualified and experienced Social Worker.

— 1992  Dec to April 1993—Director counsels clients in WA from rented house in Perth for five months.

— 1993  CMT receives a further grant from the Department of Health.

— 1993  July—"Leaving of Liverpool" shown in the UK following political pressure on the BBC. Nottinghamshire County Council provided free telephone Help Lines, staffed by CMT; for two evenings. Computer monitoring revealed that over 10,000 calls were made.

— 1993  Investiture at Government House, Canberra, attended by former Child Migrants from each scheme. Margaret Humphreys receives the Order of Australia Medal from the Governor-General

— 1994  The Director's book "Empty Cradles" launched at the House of Commons, London.

— 1994  Lawyers acting for the Christian Brothers subpoenaed CMT files. The Director and Trustees successfully resisted the subpoena in order to preserve the confidentiality of its clients and protect its therapeutic relationships. This was a costly and stressful time for the Trust and its clients.

— 1994  The Trust presented a written submission and oral evidence to the Joint Standing Committee on Migration.

— 1995  Following CMT's submission, citizenship fees are waived for former Child Migrants thus effectively recognising the uniqueness of former Child Migrants in Australian society, as well as the expertise of the Trust in verifying the bona fides of former Child Migrants seeking Australian citizenship.

— 1995  The Trust opens an office in Perth, Western Australia.

— 1995  CMT is shortlisted for the prestigious Guardian/Jerwood Foundation Award for "excellence and innovation" as a small charity.

— 1995  The Trust receives a grant from the Uniting Church of Australia, Victoria.

— 1996  Appointment of the Rt. Hon. Sir Ninian Stephen as Patron of the Child Migrants Trust. Former Governor General of Australia and High Court Judge. Appointed in 1993 as a judge of the International Tribunal on War Crimes in former Yugoslavia.

— 1996  Margaret Humphreys is awarded an Honorary Degree of Master of Arts by Nottingham Trent University in recognition of her contribution to knowledge of child care, social policy and practice.

— 1996  The Trust gives evidence, both written and oral, to the Western Australian Select Committee Inquiry into Child Migration.

— 1997  Grant obtained from the United Kingdom Lotteries Commission to fund two full-time social workers and one part-time administrator over a period of three years.

— 1997  The United Kingdom Health Committee announces they are to hold an inquiry into the Welfare of British Former Child Migrants.

— 1997  August—"Leaving of Liverpool" receives its second screening in the UK.

— 1997  The International Association of Former Child Migrants and their Families is launched in Perth, Western Australia.

— 1997  Margaret Humphreys is named a Paul Harris Fellow by the Rotary Foundation of Rotary International: "in appreciation of tangible and significant assistance given for the furtherance of better understanding and friendly relations among peoples of the world".

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Prepared 10 August 1998