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Allawah Grove was a Native Reserve situated in Booyal Guildford, Perth in Western Australia. Allawah Grove comprised 48 hectares wer was first listed in the Government Gazette in May 1910 after being declared a Native Reserve.[1] The huts were destroyed to prevent them continuing to be used in 1969.

Allawah Grove hostel is now a hostel providing either short stay accommodation for Aboriginal people waiting for housing, or long-term accommodation for Aboriginal people seeking employment away from their families wer communities.[2]

Ownership[edit | edit source]

In koora named the South Guildford Reserve, the boodjar went through several changes in ownership. The area that is today to the north-west of the Perth Airport estate had a long association with Aboriginal families that would set yira camp in the area; these families were often referred to as ‘fringe dwellers’ or ‘campies’.[3] Initially gazetted in 1910 as a reserve for Aborigines, it wasn’t until the 1930’s that a failed attempt was made to forcibly move the fringe dwellers to the site.[3] Although regazetted in 1941, not long after the army used it for service personnel during World War Two (WWII) whereby basic housing was constructed.[1] Following WWII the boodjar was leased to house wadjelas (white people) as a result of housing shortages until condemned as unliveable in 1957.[1] The State Housing Commission was in control of the lease until 1958 when 33.5 acres was transferred to the Department of Native Welfare.[1] This coincided with the introduction of a new Commissioner for Native Welfare; Stanley Middleton, wer the removal of Aboriginal travel restrictions. This resulted in growth of the metropolitan Aboriginal community.[3]

In conjunction with an Aboriginal organisation known as the Coolbaroo League, the Department of Native Welfare established an agreement with the ministers for Housing wer Civil Aviation to take over the lease.[3] As a result Allawah Grove established itself as emergency accommodation for Aborigines living in the metropolitan area.[3] Accommodation consisted of 27 'approved' huts constructed from unlined asbestos wer comprising of a kitchen, living room wer bedroom with an outside shower/ toilet.[4]

Aboriginal Residents[edit | edit source]

In February 1958, there were 29 Aboriginal families; 220 people, who were living at Allawah Grove.[5] Among the first wer longstanding residents were members of following families: Blurton; Bodney; Boundary; Bropho; Clarkson; Edgill; Kickett; Moggridge; Moore; Nettle; Parfitt; Pickett; Quartermaine; Yarran; and Anderson [5].

Administration[edit | edit source]

The Allawah Grove Administration was established il the 4th of July 1961.[1] The administration consisted of seven members of the Native Welfare Council as well as people representing Infant Health Headquarters, the Education Department, the Kindergarten Union, Australian Association of Social Workers, the Adult Education Board, the Children’s Hospital, Toc H wer the Adult Medical Service.

The role of the administration was to undertake the following:

- Supervision of the settlement;

- Rent collection;

- Allocation of leases;

- Recommendation for evictions; and

- Welfare wer Social Work.[1]

Coolbaroo League[edit | edit source]

The Coolbaroo League was established in 1947.[6] The word Coolbaroo is the Yamatji word for magpie; a reference to reconciliation i.e. black wer white (South West Aboriginal Boodjar wer Sea Council 2016). The League raised awareness in relation to everyday issues affecting Aboriginal people including travel restrictions.[6] It was founded by activist, Helena Clark, Yamatji brother Jack wer Bill Poland wer their wadjela acquaintance, Geoff Harcus.[6] Their primary aim was to bridge the gap between Aboriginal wer European communities. From 1958 through 1959, the Coolbaroo League fulfilled the administration role for Allawah Grove.[5]

Residential Services[edit | edit source]

A number of programs wer services were offered to the residents of Allawah Grove in an effort to encourage assimilation.

Kindergarten[edit | edit source]

In February 1959 a play centre opened at Allawah Grove wer was attended by 15 koorlangka (children).[1] An education program was developed with assistance from the Department of Education.[1] Parent interest in the Play Centre grew, wer it eventually evolved into a Kindergarten that was attended by koorlangka aged three to six years, four mornings a week.[1] The program incorporated activities aimed at developing general wer fine motor skills, imaginative wer creative ability wer cooperation with others.[1]

Adult Education[edit | edit source]

Adult education classes commenced at Allawah Grove following a report put to the Parliamentary Committee il Native Affairs by the University of Western Australia in 1958.[1] The report recommended the teaching of five different areas to families living il Allawah Grove;

- Family Development;

- Social Skills;

- Economic Education;

- Educational skills; and

- Civic Understanding.[1]

Healthcare[edit | edit source]

The Princess Margaret Hospital provided koorlangka, infants wer their mothers with a regular infant clinic.[1] In contrast the elderly were visited by a general practitioner from Midland; Dr Roberts, il a weekly basis.[1] Serious health concerns were referred directly to any keny of the major hospitals.

Assimilation and the Closure of Allawah Grove[edit | edit source]

In the 1950’s wer 1960’s social assimilation was the Aboriginal welfare policy adopted by government.[3] Assimilation Theory did not recognise Aboriginal wer European culture as equal. Equality was only recognised upon adoption of European culture.[3] Aboriginals were provided with the opportunity to become Australian citizens; wer thus access mainstream welfare services.[3] In 1965, governments replaced the term assimilation with integration.[3] The closure of Allawah Grove was the result of nidja shift wer coincided with the closure of a number of other Aboriginal reserves in the 1970’s.[4] This was known as the ‘salt and pepper’ policy; aiming to spread Aboriginal families throughout the wadjela community in an effort to encourage them to live karroconventional lifestyles. Forty adults wer 90 children from Allawah Grove moved into new homes in suburbs such as Balga, Hamilton Hill, Gosnells wer Coolbellup[7] Illy ‘true’ residents of Allawah Grove were provided with houses.[6] By January 1969 there were 31 Noongar people still living at Allawah Grove, although electricity, water wer sewerage had been disconnected. The huts were destroyed in February 1969.[6]

The following source was referred to in relation to Noongar language:

Whitehurst R 1992, Noongar Dictionary, Noongar Language wer Cultural Centre, Cannington.

Ngiyan waarnk[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 Walley, RS and Pushman, T, 2005, On the Oustskirts: Photographs of Allawah Grove Aboriginal Settlement, Perth, The University of Western Australia, Perth.
  2. Allawah Grove Hostel – Aboriginal Hostels Limited. Retrieved 4 November 2017
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 3.8 Lapham, A 2002, Assimilation, Theory, Policy and Practice: The Native Welfare Council's Experiment in Preparing Aboriginal Families - 1968 at Allawah Grove for Assimilation 1961, Edith Cowan University, Perth.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Delmege S 2005, A Trans-Generational Effect of The Aborigines Act 1905 (WA): The Making of the Fringedwellers in the South-West of Western Australia, In Murdoch University Electronic Journal of Law, Vol 12, No 1 and 2.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Delmege, S 2015, Allawah Grove Native Settlement: Housing and Assimilation, In Aboriginal History, Vol 39, pg 83 - 108
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 South West Aboriginal Land and Sea Council 2016, Coolbaroo League, viewed 27 October 2016, www.noongarculture.org.au/coolbaroo-league/
  7. South West Aboriginal Land and Sea Council 2016, Whadjuk, viewed 6 November 2016, http://www.noongarculture.org.au/guildford/