BaptistCare’s purpose was originally articulated in 1944 as ‘Expressing the love of Jesus to those in need’.
Today, as the organisation shifts its focus towards more transformational outcomes, its purpose is communicated as ‘Transforming lives by expressing the love of Christ'.
The focus in the early days was on vulnerable children and women with little support. Early visionaries aspired to create a home of peace; a home in the true, Christian sense of the word. More than just a building, a home should have a friendly, kindly, sympathetic atmosphere, where everyone feels instinctively that they are loved and wanted. The organisation’s early pioneers diligently set about realising their dream, founding an organisation fit for purpose and choosing a name that said it all: NSW Baptist Homes Trust.
In 1953, the Trust’s first aged care home, Yallambi, was opened in Carlingford. Over the next two decades the Trust grew significantly, with the opening of new facilities and services in Sydney, Canberra, Newcastle, Parkes and the Central Coast. This growth continued in the 1980s, with a strong focus on aged care, and family and community services such as counselling. The increasingly comprehensive range of social welfare services and in-home care were steeped in that sense of home as an atmosphere of belonging.
In 1986, the NSW Baptist Homes Trust changed its name to Baptist Community Services (BCS), acknowledging its expanding range of services. From the late 1990s and into the twenty-first century, BCS grew rapidly. Staff numbers tripled and there was huge expansion in service offerings and operating budget.
From 2014, BCS became known as BaptistCare, focusing on the care provided to all who use its facilities and services. ‘Baptist’ continues to be a statement of identity, sustaining the pillars of home, peace and Christian identity that remain integral to BaptistCare’s expression of Christ’s love.
It is still BaptistCare’s hope and prayer that its brick-and mortar buildings, community services and in-home care will create a home-like atmosphere where people may discover holistic, transforming peace. Such peace may be physical and emotional – the transformation found in safe places of rest, security and healing.
Now, in 2019, BaptistCare celebrates seventy-five years of service. Its many staff are thankful to God for the journey so far, and excited to move forward as the trusted name in providing life-transforming care for its clients.