Humans of the Wheatbelt

Humans of the Wheatbelt is a disability project that celebrates inclusion within the community.

There is always someone in each story that has a disability whether it is the human, interviewer, photographer or writer.

I’m from North London, which is where I grew up and went to school. I grew up in a beautiful family. My grandparents brought me up. We had a twenty-seven-foot motor cruiser. I had a fantastic childhood playing on the water on weekends and school holidays. I couldn’t have wished for anything better as a child.

The happiest moment of my life was when my husband made me an honest woman and married me. We met when we were fourteen and he’s the love of my life. We’ve been together since 1986.

The saddest moments of my life were losing my grandmother and then I lost what I call my ‘heart dog’ exactly fifteen years after we lost my grandmother.

My husband and I have seven children and fifteen grandchildren. We live in Clackline and work at the Loose Bit Saloon, which we hope is going to be a successful bar and restaurant. We’ve been in Clackline for six years and have been running the restaurant for two years.

Our children are all grown up and they live in England. I miss them like crazy.

My grandfather and my husband are the two most influential people in my life. My grandfather went through WWII and he brought me up with really high morals. I used to ride horses and I love my pets, my dogs and my rescue animals. I also love my motorbike.

We also used to foster teenagers with behavioural problems. I don’t get much spare time, but I enjoy walking my dogs. I like fixing things and I love cooking, even though that’s my job too.

If I have a moment where I’m finding things difficult, I’ll go into the kitchen and cook up a massive feast for my neighbours or anybody else I can think of cooking for. My husband will get up in the morning and find the kitchen a complete mess and the cupboards and fridge empty because I’ve cooked anything and everything I can find.

If we’ve got anyone vulnerable in the local area, I’ll drop off meals to them as well. It de-stresses me in the kitchen and it helps others out at the same time. At the Tavern we get quite a lot of wastage, and I don’t like wastage. If it can be used to help less-fortunate people than ourselves, then we should be doing that. Everybody should be doing that.

What I love about Clackline is it’s peaceful and beautiful. We’re right up on one of the highest peaks and we can look down at Northam. The lights from the detention centre look beautiful from where we are. I love the wildlife and waking up with the kookaburras singing. I do think this is a country of so much beauty. There’s so much life here in comparison to in London.

It’s hard to say what my advice for a younger me would be because I don’t believe in regret. Even though you’ve made a mistake, if you learn from it you shouldn’t have a regret in your life. I suppose if I’ve being truthful my one regret is not moving to Australia sooner so my children could have grown up here.

At the moment my kids are afraid to go out because there’s been two stabbings at the property adjacent to where they live in England. We arrived in Australia on November 1st 2011. We love it to bits and we’d never ever go back, other than to bring my children here. But they’re all happily married and they’ve got their own kids and living their own lives.

My husband is Aboriginal but he didn’t want to use that fact as a justification for coming here, so it ended up taking three years. By that time, our children had decided to stay in England. One of my children said to me that I wouldn’t stop them from moving to Australia if they wanted to, so why would they stop me? The next day our house went back on the market and two young people from Perth put in an offer on our house. They let us stay in the house while they finalised their move to England and we organised our trip to Australia. We even exchanged the Australian money they had left for our English money! It was perfect—it was just meant to be.

Human - Jane Ann Sealey
Interviewer - Michelle Thompson
Photographer - Rob Adams
Writer - Guy Salvidge

Humans of the Wheatbelt is a Wheatbelt Health Network project.

Shire of Northam Loosefoot Saloon Bar


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The Wheatbelt Health Network offers support including General Practice, Nursing, Mental Health, Allied Health and Visiting Specialists.

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NORTHAM

Wheatbelt Health Centre
25 Holtfreter Avenue, Northam
Phone: 08 9621 4444
Open: 8am-6pm Mon – Fri

Aboriginal Health - Northam
65 Wellington Street, Northam
Phone: 08 9690 2824

Therapy Plus
104 Wellington Street, Northam
Phone: 08 9621 4444

TOODYAY

Alma Beard Medical Centre
81 Stirling Tce, Toodyay
Phone: 08 9578 2500
Open: 8.30am – 5pm Mon – Fri

WUNDOWIE

Wundowie Health Centre
GP Services
283 Boronia Ave, Wundowie
Phone: 08 9621 4444
Open: 8.30am – 4pm Wednesdays

NARROGIN

Aboriginal Health - Narrogin
Williams Road, Narrogin
Phone: 08 9881 0385
Open: 8.30am – 4.30pm Mon – Tues

After hours medical assistance: In an emergency call 000 or present to your nearest Regional Hospital emergency department. If you have a non- emergency and would like to consult with a GP then call Telstra Health on 1800 225 523. The service is free to access for Australian residents who reside in the wheatbelt or who are temporarily residing in the Wheatbelt. This service can be accessed before 8am and after 6pm Monday-Friday, before 8am and after 12pm Saturday and all day Sunday and any Public Holidays. Thank you to Western Australia Primary Health Alliance (WAPHA) for funding this service.

  • 25 Holtfreter Avenue, Northam

  • 81 Stirling Tce, Toodyay

  • 65 Wellington Street, Northam

  • Williams Road, Narrogin

  • 283 Boronia Ave, Wundowie

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