Meet The Team

Our team of qualified therapists will work with you to help your child thrive.

Stephanie Hodge logo

Stephanie Hodge

Occupational Therapist / Director

Stephanie is passionate about making a difference in the lives of children. She takes a great interest in each individual family and in choosing a therapy approach that targets the goals of the child while meeting each family’s needs. She loves seeing the joy in each child as they develop skills and achieve their goals.

Steph has experience working with children with a range of differing disabilities within a paediatric setting. Her areas of interest include, Autism Spectrum Disorders, Down syndrome, genetic conditions (including chromosomal abnormalities), global developmental delay, learning difficulties, handwriting, toileting, sensory processing, self-regulation and functional fine-motor skills.

In her spare time, Steph enjoys spending time with her family, water-skiing, travelling, and working in her garden.

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Fiona Berry

Occupational Therapist / Director

Fiona loves working with children and seeing them grow and develop, both in skills and confidence.

Fiona is trained in the areas of Autism, sensory processing, aquatic therapy, feeding therapy, wheelchair and home modification prescription, handwriting, self-regulation and physical movement difficulties including DCD; cerebral palsy, down syndrome and chromosomal deletions.

As a mother of 3, Fiona understands the challenges that come with raising children and is practical in her therapy delivery as well as being loads of fun!

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Lauren Smith

Occupational Therapist Team Lead

Lauren has a Masters in Occupational Therapy Practice and a Bachelor of Physiotherapy. She began working at The Therapy Place in 2018 and is passionate about working collaboratively with children, young people and their families, to reach their full potential. She aims to empower her clients to increase their confidence and abilities in order to engage in meaningful occupations. She has a particular interest in working with children and adolescents on social skills and life skills.

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Bettina Jain

Occupational Therapist

Bettina is an Occupational Therapist who joined the Therapy Place team earlier this year. She has worked for the last four years with older adults however has always had a passion for working with children and is loving working in the paediatric field. Bettina enjoys working with children of all ages and abilities. She prides herself on working to make therapy fun and engaging while helping each child achieve their goals and develop confidence and independence. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her boys, being outdoors, reading and baking.

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Jacinta Miller

Occupational Therapist

Jacinta graduated from La Trobe University in 2012 with a Bachelor of Health Science and Master of Occupational Therapy Practice. Jacinta has since worked across several areas of practice including mental health and within specialist school settings before working extensively in private practice. Jacinta enjoys working closely with individuals and their families to develop the skills and confidence required to become more independent and capable in their daily lives. Jacinta believes therapy should be fun, practical and result in individuals feeling proud and accomplished. In her spare time, Jacinta enjoys horse riding, running and travelling to new places.

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Jacqui Smith

Occupational Therapist

Jacqui has had a passion for paediatrics her whole life, and has been working as an Occupational Therapist for 2 years prior to joining The Therapy Place in 2021. She has completed continuing education in Food Therapy, Reflex Integration and Handwriting. She enjoys working with a range of ages and abilities to help them to function as independently as possible in their daily lives. In her spare time Jacqui loves reading, spending time at the beach, and dancing.

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Rebecca de Boer

Occupational Therapist

Rebecca is an occupational therapist who joined The Therapy Place late last year. After several years of teaching children’s music classes, Rebecca found her passion in the field of paediatrics. She is looking forward to working with our families to help them achieve their goals. Rebecca believes in the importance of getting to know each child and their family holistically, to create therapy plans that match their unique needs. Additionally, Rebecca enjoys being active and is excited to be a part of our SPLASH swimming and SWISH basketball programs. She hopes that her work will enable more children to enjoy and participate in daily life to their full potential.

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Tania Williams

Occupational Therapist

Upon completion of her Bachelor of Occupational Therapy at La Trobe University, Tania spent time working in the UK in various OT positions. On her return, she worked for many years in community health in the Yarra Ranges, specialising in the prescription of equipment and home modifications. Tania works in another role as the OT at The Aurora School for the Deaf, a specialist early education program. She loves to work with children of all ages, using her vast experience in the areas of motor skills, social-emotional development, and daily living skills. When she is not working as an OT, she enjoys spending time with her family, travelling and teaching yoga.

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Philippa Earl

Occupational Therapist

Philippa graduated as an Occupational Therapist in 2017. Since then, she has been engrossed in the wonderful world of paediatrics, working in community health rurally with families with a range of challenges. Philippa has a passion for helping kids with physical disabilities to develop their independence in their everyday activities. She loves supporting children and their families to talk about their emotions and aims to enable kids to self-regulate so that they can be active members of their world. Philippa loves playing with her dog, spending time with family and creating her indoor plant jungle at home.

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Courtney Vinck

Dietitian

Courtney is an Accredited Practicing Dietitian (APD) and a La Trobe University graduate (Bachelor of Health Science and Master of Dietetic Practice). She was awarded ‘Student Dietitian of the Year’ by Dietitians Australia (DA). She has extensive experience in nutrition assessment, coaching and family intervention. This includes identifying gaps in your child’s diet and providing achievable goals to fill those gaps.

Her specialties include fussy eating, allergy and intolerance, weight management, Autism Spectrum Disorder and healthy growth curve establishment. In addition to providing computerized nutrition analysis and private dietetic consultations, Courtney operates as the head of our ‘Food School’ Multidisciplinary Feeding Clinic.

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Lauren Chao

Speech Therapist Team Lead

Lauren has a background in Early Childhood Intervention and has also worked extensively in the area of Autism Spectrum Disorder. With over 15 years in Paediatrics, Lauren is an experienced Speech Pathologist who brings creativity and innovation to her role! Lauren is particularly passionate about Social Thinking ™ and Executive Function. She has experience in running school-readiness and school age social skills groups and also works with teens and young adults developing their functional literacy skills.

Lauren enjoys integrating technology and AAC into her therapy and working collaboratively with her fantastic team! Lauren also conducts Autism Assessments and SOS feeding therapy. In her spare time Lauren enjoys dancing, yoga, doing puzzles and spending time with her nephews and niece.

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Kobie Bloomfield

Speech Therapist

Kobie’s warm demeanor engages all of the children that meet her. She has a wealth of experience working with complex literacy needs and social communication difficulties. Kobie also enjoys working with children who stutter and she has been trained in the Lidcombe Program. An area of particular interest is early language where she uses principles from the Hanen Program to guide her intervention. Kobie is trained in the SOS feeding program and loves joining ‘fussy eaters’ on their journey as they interact with new foods. In her spare time, she enjoys engaging in drama classes, pilates and visiting family in her hometown, Sydney.

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Sarah Hanna

Speech Therapist

Sarah believes that every person has the right to communicate and be an active participant, learner, and contributor throughout their life. She believes this, irrespective of background, previous input, complex needs, physical, sensory, or learning needs. Every individual should be given the opportunity to communicate, feel heard, have positive interactions, and foster strong meaningful relationships.

Sarah has worked over 7 years supporting children with complex communication needs and/or children who require mealtime support in Specialists Schools, mainstream schools, and Special Developmental Schools. Sarah has found that individuals learn best when they are supported by a large community of skilled, receptive, and understanding communication partners. She adopts a family-centered, strength-based, and functional approach to working with children and their family to ensure communication accessibility. Communication access aims to create a world where people who have communication difficulties can communication successfully with everyone. She is passionate about assisting the child and family to feel supported embedding Alternative and Augmentative Communication (AAC) in their everyday living to communicate for real, meaningful, functional and purposeful reasons. Sarah aims to be part of the solution to remove communication barriers and deliver high quality, evidence based therapy to achieve this goal.

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Samantha Berg

Speech Therapist

Samantha graduated in 1998. She has worked in a variety of settings including schools, early intervention and private practice. Her special areas of interest are Early Intervention, Alternative and Augmentative Communication (AAC) systems, Dyspraxia, language learning as well as social learning and thinking. Samantha is passionate about working with AAC and has experience with PODD, Proloquo2 Go and LAMP. She supports families from the introduction of AAC to clients with more advanced skills. Outside of work she enjoys gardening, learning languages and watching movies.

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Sarah Gibbs

Speech Therapist

Sarah completed a Bachelor of Speech Pathology at Australian Catholic University in Melbourne and is a registered member of Speech Pathology Australia. She is passionate about working with children and families, and aims to support children to reach their full potential. Sarah has previously gained experience working as a Disability Support Worker which sparked her passion to work alongside families to ensure communication goals are functional and family centred. Sarah enjoys working in the areas of speech, language, early communication skills and social communication. She has a special interest in Alternative and Augmentative Communication (ACC). In her spare time, Sarah loves spending time with friends and family and going on trips to the beach.

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Pippa Martin

Therapy Assistant

Pippa is passionate about working with children, adolescents and their families in addressing sensory processing difficulties, expanding communication and social-emotional goals. Pippa has previously gained experience working with kids with variety of needs through swim teaching and respite camps. She plans on pursuing a Masters of Occupational Therapy to develop her skills. She prides herself on her ability to build a strong rapport with the children she works with and the ability to collaborate with their families to achieve outcomes. Pippa is passionate about empowering children to reach their full potential, and aims to do so in a supportive, fun, and engaging way.

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Lisa Pritchard

Therapy Assistant

Lisa thoroughly enjoys working at The Therapy Place in the role of Therapy Assistant. For the past twenty-five years she has worked as an Early Childhood Teacher of deaf and hearing-impaired children. Lisa has worked in a variety of educational settings within Victoria, interstate and overseas. She is passionate about supporting the learning and growth of each child through play, song, movement and reading books with engaging props. Lisa values the importance of working collaboratively with parents and care-givers; both in the home and in the clinic. Along with her husband and two children she enjoys bushwalking, camping and holidaying in Sydney to visit family.

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Peta Kerwin

Practice Manager

Peta is a member of our administration team and has been with The Therapy Place since its beginning in Vermont. She assists with the daily running of our clinic and is always happy to help families with any of their enquiries. Peta has seen the introduction of NDIS to allied health services and manages the NDIS claiming within our clinic. For Peta, a highlight of her job is greeting all the beautiful children who come through our doors. She enjoys getting to know them and watching their confidence and abilities grow.

Outside of work Peta enjoys time with her family, writing and getting lost in a good book.

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Susan Prentice

Administration

Susan is a member of the administration team and is one of the friendly faces you will see when arriving at The Therapy Place. She has previously worked as an integration aide.

Susan, along with the others in the admin team look after invoicing, receipting payments, answering the phones and any queries people may have. She loves getting to know all the families who come to the clinic.

At home she enjoys bike riding, reading and watching too much TV.

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Katrina McKenzie

Administration

Katrina is one of the administration staff at The Therapy Place.

Katrina is married with four children. Given her family situation, she is very engaged with and interested in the types of therapies provided at the clinic, and has loved seeing the dedication and care of all our therapists and how well the team works together.

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Marice Matthews

Administration

Marice is a dedicated member of our administration team who works remotely from her home in the country. Marice has been with The Therapy Place since it’s beginning and has remained a dedicated part of the team since. Marice’s responsibilities include marking off payments and invoices so you may get a message from her if there are any payment queries.

In her spare time, Marice enjoys reading, watching TV and looking after the farm animals!