Dr Barnardo: Facts and Information

Here are some interesting facts about the work of Dr Barnardo, founder of the charity Barnardo’s, who provided homes and education for poor children in Victorian Britain.

  • Thomas John Barnardo was born on 4th July 1845 and he died on 19th September 1905.

  • He was born in Dublin, Ireland.
  • When he was sixteen years old, he decided he wanted to become a Protestant medical missionary in China.
  • He moved to London in order to train to be a doctor. He studied at the London Hospital, but never actually completed the course to earn a doctorate. Although he is known as ‘Doctor’ Barnardo, he never actually qualified as a doctor.
  • During his time in London, Thomas Barnardo became interested in the lives of the Victorian poor. He was apalled by the number of people living on the streets of London and he witnessed the horrific effects of cholera, unemployment and overcrowding.
  • Barnardo decided to put aside his plans to visit China. He opened his first ‘ragged school’ in 1867, in the East End of London, to educate and care for poor orphans.
  • One of his pupils, a boy called Jim Jarvis, took Barnardo on a walk of the the East End, showing him the sheer number of poor children sleeping rough. Barnardo was so moved by the sight that he decided to do something about it.
  • In 1870, Thomas Barnardo opened a home for boys in Stepney Causeway, providing shelter for orphans and destitute children. A sign hang on the building which said: ‘No Destitute Child Ever Refused Admission’.
  • Barnardo founded the Girls’ Village Home. Located in Barkingside, the ‘village’ consisted of a collection of cottages and was home to 1500 poor girls.
  • During his life Barnardo continued to open institutions that helped to care for poor children. By his death in 1905 it is estimated that his homes and schools cared for over 8000 children in more than 90 different locations.
  • The Barnardo’s is still in existence today. Have a look at their website.

Click here to learn more about other famous Victorians.

92 Responses to Dr Barnardo: Facts and Information

  1. I am very happy that Dr Barnado set up a charity for the poor. At school I have been learning about doctor Barnado and his charity which is a good cause. I can’t believe he’s been in the Victorian times what must he have felt like but on the other side he was rich, richer, richest. LOL still he died five years later after Queen Victoria how died aged 81 in 1901

  2. I was admitted to Barnado’s in 1934 at the age of 3 until I was 15. I don’t know where I would have been without them. I’m eternally grateful

    • Hi this realy helped me with my homework I’m glad you set up this website THX James this is great facts !

    • I’ve done lots of homework with this web it’s really good (well I think)

  3. thanks a lot 4 this! i think this is a good website! i totally recomend this! <3

  4. dr barnardo is amazing and i would recomend this website to every one who wants to find out lots about him xxxx

  5. cheers that’s really helpful lots of info and great for my homework 😉

  6. SO HELPFUL!!! i am so grateful- i would be in massive trouble if not for this website! THANK YOU!!!!!!

  7. thanks a billion
    it has helped loads!!!;)i am a massive fn of dr barnardo!!

  8. thanks it helped me with my homework and it was really insresting to 🙂

  9. Thx a billion. Really helped with my homework!!

  10. this website was very useful and didn’t know where else to get the information from for my home work

  11. yes it really did help i agree with you chelsea and maddie!♥

    • Thanks for letting us know, Emilia! Really glad we could help you out with your homework.

  12. James you are my human encyclopaedia. Thank you so much. You are a great help.(: (: (: (: (: (: I’m definitely coming back to this website any time I need help

  13. This site really helped me in revising what I learnt at my school, Start International School, Umm Al Shief, Dubai.

  14. Thank you so much I hope I’ll get some stars for my homework!!! 😉

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  16. Brill website needed this info soooooooooooo badly again brilliant website

  17. Thank You for such good help with my homework since we’ve been learning about the victorians

  18. wow awesome article thingy really helped with my school work<3

  19. I have been learning about the Victorians and my main subject is dr barnardo and what he did to help people and it has been my favourite subject since I started to do my project from poppy

  20. Ty, This Helps With My Homework! 😀
    He’s Is SUCH An Amazing Person, Don’t Yuh Think?

  21. this helped so much with my homework try it its incredible and really does work


  22. This is very good and it helped me with my homework thanks!xx

  23. Thx man helped me so much with my tricky homework 🙂

  24. WOW this has made my homework so much easyer xxxxxxxxxx$$

  25. this website is sick we are yousing it in our lessons it is very handy for info

  26. Thanks for helping me with my homework James and other people who had helped with this website ?

  27. This helped me with my homework and made me realise that he was such a great man. I’ve learnt more about him and now understand why we are learning about him.

  28. Thank this really helped me with my homework.
    It is good that Dr Banardo set up a charity for the poor

  29. this helped me finish my homework in just 15 minutes!thanks james

  30. hi at school teacher made me work thanks for info I needed it

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