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For 40 years, Caretakers Cottage has been caring and nurturing thousands of homeless kids in crisis, giving them hope and teaching them the skills they need to succeed.


Our Mission

Caretakers Cottage is dedicated to helping kids in crisis, and teaching them the skills they need to succeed. It all started some 40 years ago when Caretakers founded one of the very first youth refuges in New South Wales, and in time, helping to complete transform the way society cares for homeless youth. Caretakers Cottage provides a comprehensive approach to youth homelessness, assisting young people and their families through times of crisis.

We rely on the dedication of our staff, our board and our community to make this work possible.


The story of “Caretaker’s Cottage” is an inspiring one and very Australian in its plot. When Laurie Matthews first started “Caretaker’s Cottage” in 1977, there was nothing like it of its kind to help homeless youths in the area.... The Cottage is now seen as a leading edge example of caring for our homeless young people.
— Malcolm Turnbull MP (Prime Minister of Australia)

What We've Achieved

For 40 years, we have assisted thousands and thousands of homeless young people, making a real difference in their lives.

  • Caretakers Cottage Youth Refuge has assisted thousands of young people since its opening in 1977.
  • Our Options Youth Housing program gives young people the chance to learn to become fully independent.
  • Our Entity program provides a much needed service to kids in State Care experiencing crisis.
  • Our partnerships with local services ensures young people get the help they need as quickly as possible.
  • Our focus on outreach and support helps our young people stay on track once they've left the service.
  • We have made a real difference to the lives of so many young people. Hear what the kids have to say!