About us

About Starick

Who we are

Starick is an independent, not for profit organisation with charitable status based in Perth's south-eastern metropolitan region and working to end family and domestic violence. We assist women, young people and children experiencing abuse, whether by a partner or by another family member.

Starick employs a team of dedicated staff who support, advocate and provide resources to women and children escaping domestic violence. We also refer our clients to other community resources.

The dedicated Starick team comprises our managers and staff, board and volunteers.

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Our vision

Starick's vision is to build futures free from violence, for the women and children who use our service and the community as a whole.

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Our history

The Starick of today evolved from the hard work and commitment of strong women who were dedicated to their vision of providing safety and support to women and children who were experiencing family and domestic violence in their community.

Starick had its beginnings in 1982 when more than 80 people attended a public meeting in Gosnells to discuss the need for a refuge for women and children in the south eastern suburbs of Perth.

A steering group was formed and in 1985 Starick House was opened as a purpose built refuge providing safe emergency accommodation, information, advice and support to women and children escaping domestic and family violence.

The name Starick commemorates Nurse Henrietta Starick (1851- 1941) who worked as a Registered Maternity Nurse in the Gosnells area from 1905 to 1935.  Nurse Starick’s work extended through the areas of Maddington, Gosnells, Cannington, Southern River and Canning Vale and she covered many miles on foot tending to her patients.  Nurse Starick was extremely proud of the fact that she never lost a mother in all her years of working as a maternity nurse. She had 12 children of her own and several of her grandchildren still live in the Gosnells area.

Since the opening of Starick House, Starick has grown into a multi-facted service.

In 1999, Starick took over the management of Mary Smith Night Shelter in Bentley. This refuge owes its origins to Mary Smith, a determined woman originally from Scotland.  In 1975, the International Year of Women, Mary Smith and a group of women from the International Women’s Year Committee initiated the “Night Shelter” project.  An advisory committee was formed, a property leased and the Association was incorporated in 1976.   Mary Smith Night Shelter (named after her by the City of Canning) opened its doors in 1978 to women and children escaping domestic and family violence, experiencing mental health issues and homelessness.  Some 20  years later, Mary Smith Night Shelter was incorporated into Starick.

Mary Smith was passionate and committed to the protection of women and children up until she passed away in 1997 at 72 years if age. She was also involved in the Women's Council for Domestic & Family Violence and other committees relating to domestic violence.  She was a founder and patron of CLAN and a member of the committee that established the Family Law Act.   She became a well-known and respected community figure in the City of Canning and deservedly earned awards and recognition for her commitment to these causes.

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Starick timeline


Official opening of Starick House


Joint production with Curtin University of 30 minutes video to increase awareness of domestic violence (DV) in the community


Inception of HOWIC (Housing of Women in the Community).  Purchase of 3 units in the local area.


Pilot of 10-week support groups with Stirling Women’s Refuge


Piloting of a DV Intervention Project in the Armadale police region.


Official launch of Armadale Domestic Violence Intervention Project (ADVIP)

HOWIC – purchase of two more properties.


SPEARS Court Support Program relocated to Armadale Police Station - first not for profit organisation in Australia to provide a DV outreach service within a police station.


SPEARS funded by the Department for Community Development


Commenced provision of counselling services to women experiencing family and domestic violence (FDV).


Funded by Department of Housing and Works to renovate/build Starick refuge.


Starick took over the management of Mary Smith Night Shelter


Development of “Strengthening the Heart” Project


Establishment of Outreach service under the SPEARS Program for families leaving refuges in the South East Metro Corridor.


Family and Domestic Violence Advocate based at Cannington Police Station


Family and Domestic Violence Advocate based at Gosnells Police Station

Counselling services relocated to Gosnells Community Lotteries House


HOWIC – securing of two more properties

Agreement with Access Housing to provide accommodation and outreach services to the Eudoria Street Cluster Project


New buildings added to Mary Smith Centre with funding from the Department of Housing

Starick Services Inc. restructured into the Centre for Non-Violence, Centre for Community and Centre for Safety and Wellbeing.

Funded by Department for Child Protection (DCP) to operate the Laverton Crisis Intervention Service


(Funded by DCP under the ‘Reconnecting Rural and Remote’ program to manage the Family and Domestic Violence Case Management and Coordination Services for the Murchison/Gascoyne, Goldfields, and West/East Kimberley regions.)


Refurbishment of Starick House with funding from Lotterywest

Funded to provide the "Safe at Home" service.


Awarded funding by the DCP for the role of Lead Agency for the East Metro corridor to provide 24/7 response to women and children at imminent risk of harm


Starick Op Shop holds its first giant garage sale and raises over $1,000

Commencement of playground refurbishment at both refuges


Refurbishment with funding support from Lotterywest and 40th Birthday of Mary Smith Refuge

Our Client Stories

Anne's Story

'It'll Never Happen To Me'

Taraneh's Story

Mary Smith Refuge

Carol's Story

Starick House Refuge

Helena's Story

Outreach Services

Barbara's Story

Transitional Housing

Our Newsletter

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Quick links to our domestic and family violence services