The Seventh Day Adventist Welfare Organisation was an arm of the Seventh Day Adventist Church, established in Victoria in 1886. The Seventh Day Adventist Welfare Organisation was one of the 22 private adoption agencies approved by the Adoption Act 1964. There are records relating to adoptions organised by the organisation in the collection of the Department of Health and Human Services.
Research conducted to date for the Find & Connect web resource project has located very little information about the activities of the Seventh Day Adventist Welfare Organisation in Victoria and its involvement in adoptions.
One article from 1950 contains some information about the Church’s welfare program. The Herald had an article profiling Mrs JG Cornell of Hampton, who had worked as the welfare officer for the Seventh Day Adventists since 1932. The article states that Cornell ‘investigates all applications for assistance … helped in her work by a band of voluntary workers. Each Seventh Day Adventist church has its own Dorcas Society – women who sew and knit for needy people in Australia and abroad. Last year the welfare society distributed 7170 articles and helped 12,000 people’ (The Herald, 8 March 1950, p.17).
According to the same article: ‘Seventh Day Adventists regard welfare work as an intrinsic part of their religion. It helps people of all denominations. Doctor, dentist and tradesmen members give their services voluntarily for recommended cases’.
Seventh Day Adventist Adoption Agency