Learning how to ‘Play The Game’

March 2021 in Meet Your Neighbours

For the past four years, Caroline Springs RSL Sub Branch has supported selected students from Lakeview Senior College, Caroline Springs, to attend the annual Lord and Lady Somers Camps.

Held alongside the beach in the beautiful natural landscape of Somers, 90 kms south east of Melbourne, the camps offer fantastic opportunities for young people to develop their leadership skills, courage and persistence. They build friendships and learn invaluable skills and strategies that can be applied directly in their academic and personal lives when they return home.

Dennis Family Corporation, the developer of Modeina estate, has been proud to provide funding for this initiative throughout this time via the Modeina Community Fund.

“These grants have helped us to send four students to the camps and, as can be seen by their descriptions, they enjoyed the experience. We appreciate the support to allow these young adults the opportunity to develop and look forward to providing more with the experience,” said Peter Burquest, Membership & School Coordinator of Caroline Springs RSL Sub Branch.

“Unfortunately this year the camp didn’t go ahead due to Covid-19, but there is every likelihood January 2022 will see it back in operation in some form.”

Thanks to Nadia and Gab for sharing their experiences as participants on these camps…

The short lived, yet eventful week spent at camp without a doubt changed my perspective. Not only about the people that we may meet throughout our lives, but also my own views about myself. I’ve gained lifelong friends that I can depend on and an overwhelming sense of support and belonging with those involved in participating and volunteering at Lady Somers Camp…

‘Play the game’ was something that was constantly said to us throughout the week. I knew that when this week was over and I was back home in my normal routine, I had to do just that. Confront every situation with my best efforts, until I succeed.

For the Caroline Springs RSL, I don’t even have the words to thank you for this golden opportunity, I truly appreciate all you have done for me. Especially to Peter Burquest, who has and I expect will continue in his efforts to provide other students with the chance to attend this life changing camp.

- Nadia

images: Nadia (back row, third from right) with her new friends at the Lady Somers Camp

Lord Somers Camp was an immersive experience for me and for the rest of the 99 boys who went. We learnt a range of important things that have greatly impacted upon our lives and our ability to support those around us.

The camp enabled 16 to 18 year olds to see that in life you have to ‘Play The Game’. We learnt how to lead in life and how to succeed in the future. The camp has given me more confidence within myself and I now feel that I have the strategies I need to achieve my dreams.

The camp was tough at times as it challenged us to take risks and step outside of our comfort zones... But the purpose of the camp was to teach us that in life, we have to play the game and that the game is not easy nor fair but that we have to tackle it head on. And I now know that I have the courage and skills to do this.

I am so grateful to the Caroline Springs RSL who sponsored me and made all of this possible. Their support has enabled me to experience something that has changed my life and made me a stronger person.

- Gab


The Modeina Community Fund grant program is an initiative of Dennis Family Corporation, the developer of Modeina estate.

Since its inception in 2003, the Dennis Family Community Fund has distributed more than $750,000 in grants across its residential developments in Victoria and Queensland.

“The annual Community Fund concept was introduced as a practical way of giving back to the communities we create. We recognise the important role community groups play in connecting people and fostering a sense of belonging within our estates,” said Bert Dennis, Founding Chairman of Dennis Family Corporation.

In 2020, the Modeina Community Fund distributed $21,000 of grants to 14 community and not-for-profit groups based in the areas of Burnside, Burnside Heights and Caroline Springs.