Tuesday, 3 April 2018

Birmingham's child emigrants revisited


Annual Report Middlemore Homes
 showing ‘before and after’ photos
The Balsall Heath Local History Society has received £32,100 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for an exciting project concerning the Children’s Emigration Homes. These were founded by John Middlemore in Highgate in 1873 and are an important aspect of Birmingham’s heritage.

Made possible by money raised by National Lottery players, the project aims to make contact with living relatives of people who were in the Homes and to raise awareness through displays, talks, work with schools and an exhibition. The local History Society will be looking for volunteers to help us in a variety of roles which will offer an opportunity to enhance skills.

Literally thousands of destitute children spent up to a year at these homes before being sent off to be settled with farmers in the backwoods of Canada. They were part of a much larger picture of child emigration, but this project is to concentrate just on the Middlemore Homes.

There is huge interest in Canada, where it is estimated that over 10% of the current population are descendants of Home Children. However, there is relatively little awareness in Birmingham of the work of the Children's Emigration Homes and the impact they have had on the lives of people today.

Val Hart from the Local History Society said: 
“We are delighted to have received support, thanks to National Lottery players, and are looking forward to Interpreting the work of the Homes to the people of Birmingham.”
Vanessa Harbar, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund West Midlands said: 
"We are delighted to support this project, which, thanks to money raised by National
Lottery players, will mean that more people will be able to get involved with, protect, and learn about the exciting heritage right on their doorstep.”
Please contact Val to find out more:

valhart1@googlemail.com
0121 689 2584

Also they're looking for a project manager:

http://www.balsallheathhistory.co.uk/project-officer.html