Was your relative in one of our first children’s homes? View our gallery

Posted by / Tuesday 02 April 2019 / Campaigns
In our 150th year, we’ve launched a nationwide search to find the families of the first children in care - and we need your help. We’re asking members of the public to view our gallery of images and get in touch if they recognise any of the children in the photos released from our archives.


The gallery shows children in Victorian Britain in 1869 through to 1919, a time of widespread poverty. Many of those who were helped by Action for Children (then the National Children’s Homes) were sleeping rough, from workhouse families, or disabled. Coming to the homes meant they were fed, cared for, and given somewhere safe to sleep every night.


Our search aims to remember the lives of these children, and help descendants learn more about their family history. We’ve already tracked down a handful of the families, and will be contacting more in the coming weeks. Watch what happened when we met one of the relatives of Sophia Fauguel, taken in by Bonner Road Children’s Home in London in 1872.


The archive gallery project highlights that we’ve come a long way since Victorian times - but also that even now there are many children living in poverty and parents struggling to feed their children. As a charity, we're working hard to try to change this - today, we run over 550 services helping more than 300,000 children, teenagers, parents and carers every year.


Our search for descendants has just begun and we'll be sharing more stories as we find them. Follow us on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook for the latest, or share our gallery to help us spread the word.