2015 SCHA Meetings


November Meeting- rescheduled due to inclement weather

When: Tues. March 24, 2015, 7:30 p.m.
Where: Barrie Royal Canadian Legion, 410 St. Vincent St.
Speakers: Lori Oschefski & Jayne Poolton Turvey   
Topic: Breaking the Silence: The British Home Children

home children

From the late 19th Century to 1949, between 118 to 120 thousand children of all ages were brought to Canada in a migrant scheme to be used as indentured farm workers and domestics.   Upon arrival in Canada, and after ensuring their fitness, the children would be sent to distributing homes and then to farms under contract until the age of 18 years old. The children often found an ambivalent welcome. Some were fortunate enough to be placed with families who cared well for them, however the monitoring of children’s placements was often neglected, and many children found themselves essentially abandoned to new lives which were worse than the old.

When the First World War broke out, almost 100 percent of the Home Boys who were eligible to enlist did and after extensive research, the British Home Child advocacy and Research Association have counted up to 10,000 Home Boys who enlisted and 1,043 who have been identified so far as  having lost their lives in or as a result of the war.

During a special commemorative service held on July 28th, Don Cherry, whose maternal grandfather was a Home Boy and served in the Canadian army in the First World War, joined the BHCARA as they unveiled a Roll of Honour plaque, listing the names of the British Home  Children who perished as a result of the First World War at Black Creek Pioneer Village in Toronto.

Lori Oschefski, CEO of The British Home Children Advocacy and Research Association, will reveal the key reasons why there was such a high enlistment rate. Co-speaker Sandra Joyce, will also talk about how, as a direct result of the First World War, the number of children included in this child migration scheme dramatically increased. Her two books – ‘The Street Arab’ and the newly released ‘Belonging’ address the issue of the First World War and Second World War and how the British Home Children, of whom, her father was one, struggled with his identity even as part of the Canadian army during the Italian campaign.


~ Speaker Biography~

Lori Oschefski


Executive Director, Canada
British Home Children Advocacy and Research Association
British Home Children Advocacy & Research Association

Our British Home Child Registry has over 58,000 names! Soon to be published online for free searching! To add your BHC to the Registry please visit:  www.britishhomechildren.com


Ms. Lori Oschefski is a Genealogical Researcher and Advocate whose work is recognized world-wide. She is the founder and CEO of the British Home Children Advocacy & Research Association and creator of the website “British Home Children in Canada”. Lori was born and raised in Orillia.   Ms. Oschefski has been working with family history research which focuses on the British Home Children since 2008 when her mother, at the age of 86, revealed that she was a BHC. Her work has gained international recognition including coverage with the Winnipeg Free Press, BBC Kent, CBC Ottawa and in February BBC Wales. Her radio interview with CBC Ottawa was ranked one of the best interviews of 2013.

Another link of interest:
The Gillingham Park Fete Tragedy ( Kent, England)


April Meeting
SCHA members are invited to attend the Innisfil Historical Society Meeting

When: Sat. April 18, 2015, 2:00 p.m.

Where: Innisfil Town Hall
2101 Innisfil Beach Road
Innisfil, On L9S1A1

Speaker: Larry Cotton

Topic: His latest book- 100 Taverns in 100 Miles: Toronto to Penetanguishene

Light Refreshments to follow. Copies of Larry’s book will be available.
For further info, please email Donna at mdwice@sympatico.ca

Whiskey & Wickedness


May- Annual General Meeting

When: TBA

Where: United Church,
91 Doran Rd, Midhurst, ON L0L 1X0

Speaker: TBA

Special Events

Gowan Portrait Unveiled – Mar. 4, 2015

Join the group to witness the unveiling of the Sir James Robert Gowan’s portrait to be unveiled at the Barrie City Hall Rotunda, Wed. March 4, 2015 at 7:30 p.m.

Mark Wanzel Photo

Mark Wanzel Photo

SCHA Mailing Address

Send item to:
The Correspondence Secretary
Simcoe County Historical Association
P.O. Box 144
Barrie, ON L4M 4S9

Simcoe County Genealogy Help

Simcoe County Archives
1149 Highway 26
R.R. #2
Minesing, ON L0L 1Y2
Phone: (705) 726-9331
Toll Free: 1-866-893-9300
Fax: (705) 725-5341
Email: archives@simcoe.ca
Open Monday to Friday, 8:30am to 4:00pm

Simcoe County Branch – Ontario Genealogical Society

2013-2014 Association Member Meetings

Monthly meetings are scheduled on the 3rd Tuesday in:
May - AGM

Membership Information

Annual Membership fee:
- Single or Institutional: $12.00
- Couple or Family: $15.00

Please join the S.C.H.A. by
contacting Earl Elliott, Membership Chair by phone: 705-734-9808
or by e-mail: earl.elliott@rogers.com