- Children’s welfare services
The Franciscan Missionaries of Mary established Marymead Children's Centre (now Marymead Child and Family Centre) in 1967 as a specialised facility to provide residential care for children of families in temporary crisis. In the early years this might include a mother in hospital, a family breaking up, a child neglected or in danger. As the city grew rapidly so did demand for government-funded social services to provide for more complex needs requiring professional as well as community support. The Franciscan Missionaries of Mary withdrew from Canberra in 1986, transferring ownership of Marymead to the Catholic Archdiocese of Canberra and Goulburn. Since then, the agency has grown steadily, staffed by professional welfare workers (predominantly female), to become one of the major social services agencies in the ACT. By 2012 it was providing support, in the home and through out-of-home care, to vulnerable and disadvantaged children and their families across the Australian Capital Territory and the surrounding New South Wales region.