On 1 July 2016, Anglicare Sydney (also known as Sydney Anglican Home Mission Society) and Anglican Retirement Villages (ARV) officially merged to become 'Anglican Community Services' –trading as ‘Anglicare Sydney’.
With more than 200 years of combined service to the community, our organisation offers a greater capacity to serve communities and meet their needs across greater Sydney and the Illawarra.
Anglicare was first established in 1856 as The Church Society, originally to fund clergy and build new churches. Over time, our role expanded to provide Christian care to people in need, and from 1911 to 1997 we were known as the Home Mission Society (HMS).
In 1920, we began working with young people who came before the Children's Court, and in the 1930s, we expanded our welfare work to include both Sydney and Wollongong. In 1943 the first parish nurse, Sister Mildred Symons, was appointment to care for frail-aged people in inner Sydney. In 1945, we established a Family Service Centre dealing with a variety of needs from financial issues to marriage and family problems. Later in 1952 we established the first ‘Chesalon’ Home in Summer Hill.
From 1960 onwards, we established of a number of key programs including adoption and foster care services, 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 has been working more closely in partnership with local churches in the Sydney Anglican Diocese.
Our ARV history began when Dorothy Mowll, wife of Archbishop Howard Mowll, had a vision to provide a home for retired clergy and church workers. Following her initiative Anglican Retirement Villages (ARV) opened its first village at Castle Hill in 1959. Since then, we have enhanced and enriched the quality of life of thousands of older Australians across our network of Villages.
As the needs of the community grew and changed, so too did our Aged Care services. In addition to providing quality accommodation, we have a long history of contributing to the community. In 1993 we were one of the few organisations in the country to offer home-based care. While our services kept expanding across Greater Sydney, we still upheld our original values by reflecting God's love through care, and sharing the good news of Jesus.