Home away from home

Hamilton Park couple Dr Corina Modderman and Dr Werner Vogels (with children Luna and Finn) have invested themselves in the North East in more ways than one since moving from the Netherlands more than a decade ago.

Words Simone Kerwin photos Kurtis Hickling/supplied

2022-04-08T07:00:00.0000000Z

2022-04-08T07:00:00.0000000Z

North East Media

https://nemedia.pressreader.com/article/281642488698289

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Home away from home THEY may be still coming to grips with some of the Aussie slang and customs they’ve encountered since relocating to the North East, but Dr Corina Modderman and Dr Werner Vogels are fully invested in the region which has become their home away from their native Netherlands. Corina says the couple, who have embraced their lifestyle based in Hamilton Park near Glenrowan, are both in the business of ‘regional capacity building’ in their roles, Corina as a social worker and Werner as a neuropsychologist. The pair lead busy work lives; Corina is a lecturer, researcher and course advisor in social work at La Trobe University’s Shepparton campus, while Werner works in population health and evaluation at Murray Primary Health Network, and as a casual lecturer at La Trobe and Charles Sturt University. Alongside this, they have developed strong community involvement, Corina serving as board chair for Centre Against Violence, and Werner as deputy chair of the new Country Universities Centre, as well as being involved with the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation. “I think (regional capacity building) is our responsibility, to help retain local skills and knowledge. We need younger people who are starting their board career earlier in life, just Ħāʇåûàěê¨ğêʇaeåľêěğåħņʇ¨ûaeʇaeåőêěêûħʇŀ¨ņğʇāüʇħâåûóåûýɊʇ¨ûaeʇ=ʇħâåûóʇ mentoring and developing young people is a responsibility we have, to actually create more opportunities for a lot of people here in this area,” Corina said; Werner said retaining local skills and knowledge was at the heart of the CUC, which provides dedicated learning and study spaces to give students free access to high-speed internet, modern technology and general academic support, as well as a statewide learning network. Work and community involvement round out a life which sees Ħâêʇàāīęõêʇ¨ûaeʇħâêåěʇàâåõaeěêûɊʇ4åûûʇɢȞȢɣʇ¨ûaeʇlīû¨ʇɢȞȝɣɊʇěêľêõʇåûʇ their rural surrounds at Hamilton Park, a former orchard area Ŀâåàâʇğħåõõʇ¿ā¨ğħğʇüěīåħʇħěêêğʇ¨ûaeʇāőêěğʇ¨ààêğğʇħāʇħâêʇûê¨ě¿ņʇ Warby Range for walking and exploring. There’s space for the óåaeğʇħāʇěåaeêʇħâêåěʇ¿åóêğɊʇ¨ʇûê¨ě¿ņʇae¨úʇüāěʇoeğâåûýɊʇ¨ûaeʇŀâåõêʇ4åûûʇ has graduated to Cathedral College, he and Luna have both lapped up their school experience at nearby Glenrowan Primary. The family has also subscribed to the regional Victorian passion ÜāěʇğęāěħɊʇêûñāņåûýʇħêûûåğɊʇ¿¨ğóêħ¿¨õõɊʇàěāğğoeħʇ¨ûaeʇğāààêěɉʇʇ ûaeʇ they love the Hamilton Park community’s focus on sustainability and resilience in maintaining bushland and resources. “It’s perfect for raising kids here; we’re very fortunate. We Ħâåûóʇâāŀʇõīàóņʇŀêʇ¨ěêʇħâ¨ħʇāīěʇóåaeğʇ⨾êʇħâåğʇàâåõaeâāāaeʇāüʇõåŕõêʇ worries, and enjoying going to school every day. We love the rivers, bushwalking, the High Country, mountain biking; you can easily spend a weekend in places like Bright, all those beautiful places so close,” Corina said. āěåû¨ʇ¨ûaeʇ–êěûêěʇú¨aeêʇħâêʇúāľêʇħāʇ īğħě¨õå¨ʇåûʇȟȝȝȦʇŀâêûʇ Finn (who was born in Wales when the couple relocated there from Holland) was almost three. Corina had been recruited by the State Government to work in child protection locally with the Êę¨ěħúêûħʇāüʇ:īú¨ûʇvêěľåàêğɊʇ¨üħêěʇğęāŕåûýʇ¨ûʇ¨aeľêěħåğêúêûħʇ in a UK magazine about a need for social workers in Australia. “Social work is on the skilled occupation list for migration to Australia, so it’s one of those occupations we don’t have enough of. I had a couple of job interviews via Skype, but the āûêʇåûʇ–¨ûý¨ě¨ŕ¨ʇà¨úêʇŀåħâʇ¨ʇěêõāà¨ħåāûʇę¨àó¨ýêɊʇŕåýâħğɊʇ¨ʇ visa arrangement, and I must say the department looked after us really well, because three months after our arrival they organised permanent residency for us, which is just gold. We arrived in July, and in November we had permanent residency,” Corina said. >> North East Living | –Êěûêěʇğħ¨ņêaeʇ¨ħʇâāúêʇŀåħâʇ4åûûʇüāěʇħâêʇoeěğħʇàāīęõêʇāüʇúāûħâğʇ āüʇħâêʇü¨úåõņɶğʇħåúêʇåûʇ īğħě¨õå¨Ɋʇŀâåõêʇõåľåûýʇåûʇ¨ʇīûåħʇåûʇ–¨ûý¨ě¨ŕ¨ʇ Ħâêņʇğ¨ņʇüêõħʇõåóêʇ¨ʇú¨ûğåāûʇħāʇħâêúʇ¨üħêěʇ¿êåûýʇ¨ààīğħāúêaeʇħāʇħâêʇ ğú¨õõʇõåľåûýʇğę¨àêğʇàāúúāûʇåûʇ¿āħâʇ:āõõ¨ûaeʇ¨ûaeʇħâêʇ‚jɉ –åħâʇ–êěûêěɶğʇğóåõõğʇåûʇûêīěāğàåêûàêʇ¨ûaeʇęğņàâāõāýņʇ¨õğāʇâåýâõņʇ ğāīýâħɨ¨üħêěʇåûʇ īğħě¨õå¨Ɋʇâêʇğāāûʇ¨ęęõåêaeʇüāěʇ¨ʇęāğåħåāûʇŀåħâʇħâêʇ vħ¨ħêʇ5āľêěûúêûħɊʇŀāěóåûýʇåûʇaeåğ¨¿åõåħņʇğêěľåàêğʇ¨ûaeʇaeāåûýʇõå¨åğāûʇ ĿāěóʇŀåħâʇàâåõaeʇęěāħêàħåāûɊʇ¨ğʇŀêõõʇ¨ğʇęğņàâāõāýåà¨õʇ¨ğğêğğúêûħğɉʇ :Êʇğ¨åaeʇ¨ʇóêņʇàâ¨õõêûýêʇŀ¨ğʇħāʇ⨾êʇħâêʇěī¨õåoeà¨ħåāûğʇâêɶaeʇ ¨ÀÂÅÊĽÊAEʇÀĚÊAEÅĦÊAEʇÅÛʇ īğħě¨õå¨ɉʇ āěåû¨ʇ¨ýěêêaeʇħâêʇħě¨ûğõ¨ħåāûʇāüʇ ğóåõõğʇħāʇ¨ʇûêŀʇàāīûħěņɊʇğāúêħâåûýʇü¨àêaeʇ¿ņʇú¨ûņʇûêŀʇ¨ěěåľ¨õğɊʇŀ¨ğʇ ¨ʇğåýûåoeà¨ûħʇâīěaeõêɋʇɳ=ʇħâåûóʇņāīʇóûāŀʇŀâêûʇņāīʇúåýě¨ħêʇħâ¨ħʇņāīʇ ğħêęʇ¿¨àóʇ¨ûaeʇŀāěóʇņāīěʇŀ¨ņʇīęʇ¨ý¨åûɌʇåħɶğʇñīğħʇěê¨õåħņɉʇʇ–êɶľêʇaeāûêʇ 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ěê¨õõņʇęāğåħåľêʇŀåħâʇŀâ¨ħʇŀêɶěêʇaeāåûýʇ¨ħʇħâêʇúāúêûħɉʇ}âåğʇņê¨ěɊʇ=ʇ Üêêõʇěê¨õõņʇýěê¨ħʇ¨¿āīħʇŀâ¨ħʇ=ʇ⨾êʇ¨àâåêľêaeɊʇ¨ûaeʇ=ʇğêêʇħâêʇğīûɉʇʇ=ʇ ÜêêõʇğħěāûýɌʇŀêʇŀāěóêaeʇâ¨ěaeʇħāʇýêħʇħāʇħâåğʇęāåûħɉ ɳrāʇú¨ŕêěʇŀâ¨ħʇğħīaeņʇņāīʇaeāʇɨʇŀâêħâêěʇåħɶğʇ¨ʇ} 4#ʇàêěħåoeà¨ħêʇāěʇ Aeåęõāú¨Ɋʇ¨ʇ Ɋʇ¨ʇq¨ğħêěğɊʇ¨ʇoâ Ɋʇåħɶğʇ¨õõʇ¨¿āīħʇęīğâåûýʇħâěāīýâɉʇ=ħɶğʇ ğħ¨úåû¨ʇ¨ûaeʇåħɶğʇħâêʇğīęęāěħʇûêħŀāěóğʇ¨ěāīûaeʇņāīʇħâ¨ħʇâêõęʇħāʇýêħʇ Ņāīʇħāʇħâ¨ħʇęāåûħʇāüʇ¨àâåêľêúêûħɉɴ āěåû¨ʇŀ¨ğʇęěāúāħêaeʇħāʇğêûåāěʇõêàħīěêěʇ¨ħʇl¨ʇ}ěā¿êʇħâåğʇņê¨ěɊʇåğʇāûʇ Ħâêʇīûåľêěğåħņɶğʇ¨à¨aeêúåàʇ¿ā¨ěaeɊʇ¨ûaeʇâāõaeğʇľ¨ěåāīğʇõê¨aeêěğâåęʇěāõêğʇ ¨Àěāğğʇåħğʇrīě¨õʇ:ê¨õħâʇvàâāāõɉʇ}âêğêʇěāõêğʇüāàīğʇāûʇěīě¨õʇà¨ę¨àåħņʇ ¿īåõaeåûýʇāüʇěêğê¨ěàâêěğʇ¨ûaeʇğāàå¨õʇŀāěóêěğɊʇ¨ûaeʇęěāúāħåûýʇğāàå¨õʇ Ŀāěóʇ¨ğʇ¨ʇà¨ěêêěʇę¨ħâŀ¨ņʇŀåħâʇęõêûħņʇāüʇāęęāěħīûåħåêğʇ¨ľ¨åõ¨¿õêɉ āěåû¨ʇğ¨åaeʇğâêʇŀ¨ğʇaeě¨ŀûʇħāʇğāàå¨õʇŀāěóʇåûåħå¨õõņʇħāʇęīěğīêʇ social justice, equal opportunity and inclusion: “As a child, I can remember very strongly feeling that some people were able to have opportunities but other people were staying behind, and wondering how we could create opportunities so that everybody could come along. “Our cohort at Shepparton is not your traditional social work student cohort; there are people with refugee backgrounds, Ŀêʇ⨾êʇęěāīaeʇ ¿āěåýåû¨õʇğħīaeêûħğʇ¨ûaeʇoeěğħɨåûɨü¨úåõņʇğħīaeêûħğɊʇ people who have been in care themselves, who have experienced trauma. Creating a space where all these people can do a īûåľêěğåħņʇàāīěğêʇɨʇħâêņʇğħåõõʇ⨾êʇħāʇŀāěóʇâ¨ěaeɊʇāüʇàāīěğêʇɨʇħâ¨ħɶğʇ Ŀâ¨ħɶğʇaeěåľåûýʇúêɊʇħāʇàěê¨ħêʇêěī¨õʇāęęāěħīûåħåêğɉʇ}âêņʇ¿ěåûýʇ AeåőêěêûħʇęêěğęêàħåľêğɌʇħâêěêʇ¨ěêʇaeåőêěêûħʇŀ¨ņğʇħâ¨ħʇŀêʇà¨ûʇõāāóʇ ¨Ħʇħâåğʇŀāěõaeʇ¨ûaeʇõāāóʇ¨üħêěʇŀêõõ¿êåûýʇ¨ûaeʇğêõüɨà¨ěêʇ¨ûaeʇàāûûêàħåāûʇ Ŀåħâʇ āīûħěņʇ¨ûaeʇŀåħâʇğêõľêğɊʇğāʇħâ¨ħɶğʇľêěņʇåúęāěħ¨ûħɉʇʇ}âêʇ¿ê¨īħņʇ āüʇěêýåāû¨õʇ¨ěê¨ğʇåğʇħâ¨ħʇ¨ʇõāħʇåğʇęāğğå¿õêɊʇ¿īħʇåħɶğʇěê¨õõņʇŀâ¨ħʇņāīʇęīħʇ åûħāʇåħɉʇœāīʇûêêaeʇħāʇęīħʇņāīěğêõüʇāīħʇħâêěêɉʇ=ħɶğʇ¨õõʇ¨¿āīħʇğêêåûýʇħâêʇ opportunity and working hard.” Werner said he followed the neuropsychology path as a way Ħāʇêńęõāěêʇɳŀâņʇŀêʇaeāʇħâêʇħâåûýğʇŀêʇaeāɴɋʇɳ=ħɶğʇ¨õõʇ¨¿āīħʇħâêʇěêõ¨ħåāûʇ between brain and behaviour, and then how we interpret our behaviours, and how others interpret our behaviours within social Àāûğħěīàħğɉʇ4āěʇúêɊʇħâ¨ħɶğʇľêěņɊʇľêěņʇü¨ğàåû¨ħåûýɉʇʇ=üʇņāīʇ⨾êʇħâêʇ ĦāāõğɊʇõåóêʇûêīěāåú¨ýåûýɊʇħāʇåûľêğħåý¨ħêɊʇåħɶğʇñīğħʇğāʇü¨ğàåû¨ħåûýɉʇʇ –Êʇóûāŀʇğāʇõåŕõêʇ¨¿āīħʇåħɊʇğāʇ¿êåûýʇ¨¿õêʇħāʇęêêõʇ¨õõʇħâêʇõ¨ņêěğʇ¿¨àóʇ is fascinating.” Werner is armed with a PHD in psychology that focused on mapping memory functioning in patient populations and healthy volunteers, looking at understanding brain injury and trauma, and the impacts on our functioning in daily life. Adding further to their busy schedule, Corina and Werner also Êûý¨ýêʇåûʇěêğê¨ěàâʇęěāñêàħğʇħāýêħâêěɊʇęěåú¨ěåõņʇåûʇħâêʇāīħɨāüɨâāúêʇ À¨ěêʇğę¨àêʇüāěʇņāīûýʇęêāęõêʇɨʇāûêʇåûʇħâêʇq¨õõêêʇ¨¿āīħʇåûħêýě¨ħêaeʇ health systems, and the most recent in the Goulburn Valley, evaluating a mentoring program for Aboriginal young people on œāěħ¨ʇœāěħ¨ʇ āīûħěņɉʇ}âêņʇ¨ěêʇħâêʇāûõņʇûāûɨ ¿āěåýåû¨õʇęêāęõêʇāûʇ the research team, and Werner said he felt privileged to work with First Nations people, and learn about their knowledge and wisdom. āěåû¨ʇ¨ýěêêaeɋʇɳ–êɶěêʇûāħʇħâêʇêńęêěħğɊʇ ¿āěåýåû¨õʇęêāęõêʇ¨ěêʇ the experts, and we are guided by their ways of knowing and being in this project and working alongside the Aboriginal researchers, Elders, program leaders and young people,” Corina said. It adds further to the arc of learning for the couple since they moved to Australia, which has included coming to understand social customs like bringing their own chairs, drinks and contributing a salad or dessert to barbecues, and the Aussie Ħě¨aeåħåāûʇāüʇà¨õõåûýʇęêāęõêʇɵú¨ħêɶɉ “I think we went wrong there at the start, because in the Rêħâêěõ¨ûaeğʇŀâêûʇņāīʇàāúêʇħāʇaeåûûêěɊʇņāīʇaeāûɶħʇěê¨õõņʇ¿ěåûýʇ ¨ûņħâåûýɊʇåħɶğʇ¨õõʇà¨ħêěêaeʇüāěɊʇğāʇŀêʇúåğğêaeʇħâ¨ħʇ¨ʇàāīęõêʇāüʇħåúêğɉʇ =ĦɶğʇľêěņʇŕīåaeʇâêěêɊʇûāħʇğāʇāěý¨ûåğêaeɉʇœāīʇà¨ûʇ⨾êʇûāʇęõ¨ûğʇ¨ûaeʇ then people throw a barbecue and everybody rocks up, lots of last úåûīħêɊʇɵxâɊʇņê¨âɊʇõêħɶğʇýêħʇħāýêħâêěʇ¨ûaeʇaeāʇħâåğɶɊɴʇ āěåû¨ʇğ¨åaeɉ –âåõêʇħâêņɶľêʇüāīûaeʇħâêʇħě¨aeåħåāû¨õʇľåêŀʇāüʇħâêʇõ¨åae¿¨àóʇ īğğåêʇ to be true to life, Werner said they had also been surprised by the û¨ħåāûɶğʇõêľêõʇāüʇàāúęõå¨ûàêʇħāʇ X•= ɨȞȦʇěêğħěåàħåāûğɋʇɳ}âêʇ īħàâʇ news spoke about all the people who had demonstrations and said, ûāɊʇħâ¨ħɶğʇûāħʇýāåûýʇħāʇâ¨ęęêûɊʇ¨ûaeʇåħʇħāāóʇúāûħâğʇ¨ûaeʇúāûħâğʇüāěʇ the emergency laws to be declared. Here, it happened straight away.” }âêʇę¨ûaeêúåàʇâ¨ğʇęěêľêûħêaeʇħâêåěʇīğī¨õʇľåğåħğʇħāʇ¨ûaeʇüěāúʇü¨úåõņʇ úêú¿êěğɊʇŀâåàâʇâ¨ğʇ¿êêûʇaeåőåàīõħɊʇ¿īħʇ āěåû¨ʇğ¨åaeʇåħʇâ¨aeʇ¨õğāʇ opened up the chance for more local travel: “We had the chance to spend four weeks in South Australia last Christmas, and a month in }¨ğú¨ûå¨ʇħâåğʇğīúúêěɊʇğāʇ=ʇħâåûóʇåħʇâ¨ğʇ¨õõāŀêaeʇīğʇħāʇğêêʇ¨ʇõāħʇúāěêʇ āüʇ īğħě¨õå¨ʇħâ¨ûʇŀêʇŀāīõaeʇ⨾êʇåüʇħâêěêʇŀ¨ğʇûāʇę¨ûaeêúåàɉʇʇ}â¨ħʇ family time and being together has been really good.” And though they miss their original home and the loved ones ¨ŕ¨àâêaeʇħāʇåħɊʇ āěåû¨ʇğ¨åaeʇğâêʇüêõħʇħâêņʇŀāīõaeʇûāŀʇ¿êʇɳğęõåħʇüāěêľêěɴʇ between the Netherlands and Australia: “I miss the landscape and Ħâêʇğúêõõʇāüʇ:āõõ¨ûaeʇɨʇħâāīýâʇ=ʇaeāʇoeûaeʇŀâêûʇ=ɶúʇħâêěêɊʇ=ʇõāûýʇüāěʇħâêʇ smell of Australia in the summer, and the sound of cicadas. And Ŀâêûʇ=ɶúʇâêěêɊʇ=ʇõāûýʇüāěʇħâêʇrêħâêěõ¨ûaeğɉʇ–êʇ⨾êʇħŀāʇâāúêğʇûāŀɊʇ ¨ûaeʇŀêɶľêʇú¨aeêʇğāúêʇľêěņʇaeê¨ěʇüěåêûaeğʇâêěêʇ¨ğʇŀêõõɉɴʇ

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