Bonegilla Migrant Experience
The original complex was built as Bonegilla Army Camp during the Second World War.
It became the Bonegilla Migrant Reception and Training Centre in 1947, and until 1971 served as Australia’s largest and longest operating migrant centre.
It was the first Australian home for more than 200,000 post war migrants from over 50 countries.
A large group of remnant accommodation huts and buildings still remain today which house various displays, cultural exhibitions and information.
Both inside and outside the buildings visitors can experience first-hand what life was like as a post-war migrant at Bonegilla.
Block 19 has been assessed by the Australian Heritage Council as having outstanding heritage value to the nation and is included on the National Heritage List.
There were 24 such blocks, which at their peak housed a population of 7500 people. This was more than the population of the nearby town of Wodonga.
Today Australia faces many immigration challenges. The number of immigrants, commonly referred to as ‘boat people’, combined with the number of people wishing to legally immigrate, continues to rise.
Today we face a crucial time in Australian history as we explore migration and cultural acceptance. Visitors to the centre will experience a time of reflection, consideration, understanding and empathy.