Eileen Heath was born in 1905. She was the Superintendent of St. Mary's Anglican Hostel at Alice Springs in the Northern Territory. This interview focuses on her work at St Mary's. She also briefly mentions her work on the State Children's Council and her role as matron of the Fannie Bay Receiving Home in Darwin. Sister Eileen Heath began her welfare work as an Anglican missionary at the Moore River Mission. From 1946 she was superintendent of St Mary's Hostel in Alice Springs. In 1951 Sister Eileen became a member of the State Children's Council and in 1956 she worked as the matron of the first Receiving Home at Fannie Bay in Darwin. Sister Eileen returned to Alice Springs in 1957 and worked in the welfare system until her retirement. She died at the age of 105 in 2011.
Some interviews from the Bringing Them Home Oral History Project are available to listen to online in cases where interviewees have given their permission for this to happen. Other recordings and transcripts of interviews are available to in the Library. A number of interviews are subject to restricted access. For further information, please contact the National Library.
In this interview Sister Eileen Heath speaks about working as an Anglican missionary at Moore River Native Settlement, WA, from 1935 to 1944. She discusses the living conditions at Moore River, AO Neville, the Chief Protector of Aborigines, and the separation of children at Moore River.
From 1946 Heath was the Superintendent of St. Mary's Anglican Hostel at Alice Springs in the Northern Territory and in 1956 she was matron of the Fannie Bay Receiving Home in Darwin. She was also a member of the State Children's Council. She talks about these roles and outlines how the workings of the welfare system at that time and the criteria used for determining the removal of children. She also expresses her views on the Bringing Them Home Report and the current situation of Aboriginal people.
The interview is available to listen to online. A timed summary and transcript are also available.
Prepared by: Karen George and Gary George
Created: 10 September 2012, Last modified: 3 December 2014