AAEM (Australian Aboriginal Evangelical Mission) Hostel, Esperance
Years of OperationThis facility was mentioned in Wilson and Robinson (1971) Aboriginal Hostels in Perth: A Comparative Survey and in the WELSTAT report of 1979 but no detailed information is available.
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Brief HistoryWhen surveying Aboriginal hostels in 1971, Wilson and Robinson referred to a hostel “for approximately 50 working youths in Esperance. The hostel is largely independent of the Department [of Native Welfare], although it has received some financial assistance for particular building projects.” (Wilson and Robinson (1971) Aboriginal Hostels in Perth: A Comparative Survey).
Information from the Department for Community Development indicates that the AAEM Hostel in Esperance was operated by Mr John Pedlar “during the native welfare period as a working boys’ hostel for the employment of young Aboriginal people on farms and stations around the Esperance-Eyre Highway area.” (Internal Memo Manager Hostels Group to A/Manager Information Support Services, Department for Community Development, July 19th 2004).
The WELSTAT (welfare statistics) Collection of 1979 notes the Australian Aboriginal Evangelical Mission as a hostel (ie. “a residential child care establishment mainly for children aged 15 and over who have left school...[providing] some care, protection, control, corrective treatment or detention, as well as full board”).
Mission Grant in Aid 1973 for a cold room and renovations, in 1974 for furniture and in 1980 for bedside cabinets, tables and chairs.
RecordsIt is possible that residents at the AAEM Hostel also had files held by the Department of Native Welfare.
Departmental records for children placed by the Department of Community Welfare or the Department of Native Welfare may exist. Of particular interest, if able to be located, are the Department of Native Welfare “Resident Details Information Sheet (1) Hostel and Private Board Placement ” and “Resident Details Information Sheet (2) Hostel and Private Board Placement”.
Additionally, the Department for Child Protection’s Aboriginal Index and the guide, “Looking West”, should be consulted for information.
AccessWhile access to records is restricted to protect the privacy of individuals, people are encouraged to enquire.
Contact DetailsFreedom of Information
Department of Communities
Locked Bag 5000, Fremantle WA 6959
Telephone: (08) 6217 6888
Country free call: 1800 176 888