Our Story

Welcome to the new Anglicare: merging two great organisations.

ARV and Anglicare have joined together to become Anglicare.

Anglicare was first established as The Church Society in 1856 and then known as the Home Mission Society from 1911 until 1997.  While the organisation’s original purpose was to fund clergy and build new churches, from the time of the 1890’s depression its role began to expand to encompass the provision of Christian care to people in need.

Significant milestones prior to WW2 included the appointment of a deaconess to work with young people who came before the Children’s Court from 1920 and the expansion of the Society’s welfare work to include both Sydney and Wollongong from the 1930’s.  In 1943 the first parish nurse was appointment to care for frail-aged people in inner Sydney followed by the establishment of the first Chesalon home in Summer Hill in 1952 and a Family Service Centre dealing with a variety of needs from financial issues to marriage and family problems in 1945.

The decades from 1960 saw the establishment of a number of key programs including adoption and foster care services, Anglicare Shops, disability services, migrant and refugee services  and the expansion of community care services through a network of regional and local offices.  A significant focus in recent decades has been working more closely in partnership with local churches in the Sydney Diocese.  

While the way in which we respond to need in the community has changed throughout the years, the focus remains on providing Christian care that meets physical, social, emotional and spiritual needs, reflecting the love of Christ and inclining people towards the gospel.

ARV - In 1959, following the initiative of Dorothy Mowll who had a vision to provide a home for retired clergy and church workers, ARV’s first village was opened at Castle Hill. Since the opening of our first village in Castle Hill, we have been able to enhance the quality of living and enrich the lives of tens of thousands Australians across our network of 37 villages.

As the needs of the community grew and changed, so too did our aged care services. In addition to providing quality accommodation, we also have a long history of community contribution. Our active work is especially significant in our pioneering for community services. More than 20 years ago, we were one of the few organisations in the country to offer home-based care. It’s wonderful to be able to look back and see how far we have come since the introduction in 1993.

Whilst our services keep expanding across greater Sydney, we still uphold our original values by reflecting God's love through care, and sharing the great wisdom of Jesus. And more importantly, our caring and compassionate approach will always stay the same.

In April 2016, the Synod of the Sydney Diocese of the Anglican Church unanimously voted for the merger of ARV and Anglicare. This merge allows us to better serve the needs of people and communities across the Sydney Anglican Diocese, under a shared purpose and values.