Wanslea was established as a Home for young children in Cottesloe. It was run by a private management committee, taking private admissions. By the 1960s, children who were wards were also sent to Wanslea and in the 1980s, school-age children were placed there. From 1985 the model of 'care' changed from orphanage-style accommodation to cottage care and fostering, which Wanslea continues, for children aged 0-12 years.
Wanslea was established by the Wanslea Hostel Committee as a large Children's Home in Cottesloe. It inherited the assets of the earlier Wanslea Hostel at 30 Bulwer Street, North Perth (Mt Lawley), which had closed six months after the end of World War II.
Wanslea occupied the building in Cottesloe that had previously been the Independent Order of Oddfellows Orphanage (1905-1940) and the Lady Mitchell Convalescent Home for soldiers (1940-1946).
Between 1947 and 1985, when fostercare was introduced, Wanslea had focused on providing temporary accommodation for children who could not live at home with family, often due to the illness of children's mothers.
In 1984, Wanslea moved from the Cottesloe site to new premises. Residential cottages were established at first in Mosman Park and then elsewhere in the metropolitan area, and in country WA.
Wanslea has received government funding from the department responsible for child welfare throughout its existence.
1943 - 1946 Wanslea Hostel
1947 - 1984 Wanslea
Sources used to compile this entry: 'Community Services Wanslea', in Hansard Archive 1870 to 1995, Parliament of Western Australia, 21 November 1984, https://www.parliament.wa.gov.au/Hansard/hansard1870to1995.nsf/83cc4ce93b5d4e0b48257b33001cfef6/13B4AC13CC5439D948257A4600141BF4/$File/19841121_Assembly.pdf; Heritage Council of Western Australia, 'Wanslea', in inHerit, Western Australia State Heritage Office, Government of Western Australia, 8 February 2015, http://inherit.stateheritage.wa.gov.au/public/p/598. pp.7-8.; Information Services, Department for Community Development, 'Table 62: Children and Young People at Wanslea, Certain Years between 1947 and 1995', Signposts: A Guide for Children and Young People in Care in WA from 1920, Government of Western Australia, 2004, https://signposts.communities.wa.gov.au//pdf/pdf.aspx; The WANS: Pledged to Unity and Service [Document].
Prepared by: Debra Rosser
Created: 15 March 2011, Last modified: 7 October 2014