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QBA History

History of Queensland Blind Association Inc.

Queensland Blind Association Inc. (QBA) was established by a small group of Blind people in February 1939, just prior to World War 2.

It was known then as ‘The Blind Person’s Building and Home Maintenance Society’. Along the way we have had a couple of name changes from Welfare Association for the Blind and then to our current name of Queensland Blind Association Inc.

The very first meeting to form the Association was held in a house in Young Street, Annerley. For the next couple of years meetings were held in the then President’s home in Brisbane Street, Annerley. As the Association grew in membership a house was bought in Hubert Street, Woolloongabba.

When funding became available the house was renovated to accommodate 2 small offices one of which shared the board room table and a store-room for filing cupboards and at the back of this a hall was built to accommodate the Associations meetings and the Member’s Christmas party. This Hall had a dual purpose in providing extra income as it was a suitable venue for hiring for social and club meetings.

As the Association’s membership grew so did our requirements to have more space. So after 40 years we decided it was time to move and we built our current headquarters in Warwick Street, Annerley which was officially opened on the 19th February 1991 by the then Governor of Queensland Sir Walter Campbell.

QBA is a Brisbane based organisation directing our services throughout the state of Queensland. Membership consists of legally blind people from the age of 16 onwards. It is governed by a Board of Management of eight who are also members of the Association. Our Patron is Hon. Justice James Douglas.

We are proud of our achievements and the journey we have travelled providing real assistance to many people.

We know the foundation that has been laid throughout the past years will provide a solid platform whereby we can continue to support Queensland Blind people for many years to come.

Helen Keller with Brisbane Lord Mayor Ald Chandler in 1948

Board Members of the then named “Welfare Association For The Blind. 19 November 1953’

Life Members

The Association values the contribution made by its members and as such may award Life Member status to a member who has given outstanding service to the Association.

The following members have been inducted as Life Members.

+ Deceased

William Jenkins +

Leslie Mc Kinlay+

James (Jim) R Watson+

1991    John (Jack) Fulton+

1991   Ross R Smith+

1995   Joseph Valinoti+

1995   Darel M Green

2000   Mervyn H Matthews, Mervyn (Mick) Wendt+

2001   Ken S Kirkpatrick BSc, R Trevor Vayro OAM+

2008  Bryan D Forster, Joy R Forster+

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