Thursday, June 9, 2011

About Oranges and Sunshine

I was fortunate to receive free tickets to attend the movie "Oranges and Sunshine" which is based on the story of Margaret Humpreys, a social worker in Nottingham, in the UK, who discovered that many English children were transported to Australia over a 30 - 40 year period, to a life in institutions. Margaret's book "Empty Cradles" tells some of the stories of those children so cruelly taken from their mothers.

 Many were told their parents were dead, which was in fact not true.  Various organisations with government approval (UK and Australia) were part of this horrible program that saw these children shipped to Australia in huge numbers, to a life of violence, drudgery, and for many physical and sexual abuse.

David Hill wrote about it in his book "Forgotten Children".  The truth is a very sad indictment on the treatment of these children, by religious and non-religious groups.

A search will discover many stories including those about the children at Bindoon, and other orphanages and there are details of the perpetrators of those cruel acts agains the children here.

The movie is excellent, and quite confronting at times, and tells the stories of several of the children, then adults, who related the horrific experience.  Some were reunited with their families.  It is a movie worth seeing, if not to learn the truth about some of our Australian and UK history.  Full marks to Margaret Humphreys who was able to help find some closure for those adults trying to come to terms with the horrific lives they had, when they were promised 'oranges and sunshine.'

I wrote a story about my mysterious knife here

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