Occupational therapist Sarah Piesse has found her perfect location, half the world away from her original home.

Sarah, who hails from near Perth, Western Australia, originally came to the Isle of Man through agency work but liked what she saw and decided to find a permanent job and make the island her home.

It was down to good luck that Sarah, who was working in the UK at the time, even considered making the move to the island.

She has family in the UK and had long-planned to find out what life was like on the other side of the world.

The Isle of Man was not on her radar to start with, though. Her first experience of working for the National Health Service through agency work was actually in Bournemouth.

She said: ‘It is purely by chance that they offered me a post here. I knew precisely nothing about the Isle of Man!

‘That was back in 2015. Then I had a couple of offers to come back for more agency placements. I just kept boomeranging back to the island so I was really keen to apply for a permanent position when one came back.’

Sarah thinks that having originated from a rural community in Australia helped her to feel an affinity with the Isle of Man.

‘Everything I loved about Australia is what I like about the Isle of Man. You have both urban areas and the countryside. And there is a strong sense of community.’

Sarah, who was planning to spend some of her annual leave over Christmas by travelling around Europe, as well as meeting up with family in London, finds the Isle of Man the ideal base.

She works as an occupational therapist in mental health services, helping patients to deal with a wide range of issues. It is a rewarding job, she said.

‘We can help to provide people with a sense of independence that they may otherwise not be able to attain,’ she added.

‘I work in a very integrated team. We work together to address health issues.

‘Particularly on a nice day, weather wise, there is nothing lovelier than being out and driving around and seeing people at home.

‘I feel really privileged to be able to work and see them at home, doing well and being able to manage their mental health difficulties.’

Sarah, 36, is a great fan of the island’s beauty, including the many stunning glens, with Dhoon Glen being a particular favourite.

‘It is just such a scenic island.’

Working in the Isle of Man, Sarah has found herself to be in a supportive environment at work and it also crosses over into life in general.

‘I would certainly recommend the island as a place to come, for a number of reasons,’ said Sarah.

‘Professionally speaking, they really embrace career education and development and, within my professional job, it is quite diverse.

‘There are huge opportunities in terms of advancing any clinical skills that you have.

‘In terms of lifestyle you have much more of a better work/life balance.’

She added: ‘It is the kind of place that would be really attractive to bring up a family.’

Sarah urged anyone who was toying with the idea of coming to the Isle of Man to embrace the concept, especially those from further afield.

‘Certainly in my experience people are so very welcoming and supportive of new people to the island,’ she said.

‘I wouldn’t hesitate in recommending the island as a place to live.’