Stichting GOED: striving to bring Dutch people abroad together

This article is about Stichting GOED – Grenzeloos Onder Een Dak, written by Antonietta Sgherzi.  This article is in English, for Nederlands visit

Stichting Grenzeloos Onder Een Dak (GOED) is a nonprofit foundation, established in early 2019 to connect over one million Dutch people living outside the Netherlands. This Foundation is the first official advocacy organization striving to bring hundreds of existing Dutch associations, organizations, clubs and online communities, spread out over the world, together under one roof.

To get a better understanding of the activities and importance of the GOED Foundation, they answer a few questions:

Why should the Dutch Government, when drafting its policies, take Dutch citizens living abroad into consideration?

Firstly the majority will maintain a close tie to their Dutch roots. Secondly they will contribute in bilateral international trade and are the true worldwide ambassadors of the Netherlands. They are proud to be Dutch and will also pass this on to the next generation(s).  The children, who return to the Netherlands to study or work, should not be ignored, they are multi -lingual, adapt easily to different cultures and situations and are a great asset to The Netherlands. Therefor the government should treasure them, and taking away their Dutch nationality, is not the right approach! The existing policies, laws and regulations often result in many problems and frustrations for Dutch citizens abroad.

Why is the GOED Foundation necessary?

The GOED Foundation strives to improve the communication with the government, authorities and politicians to resolve these problems.

Nowadays everything gets digitized, however not for The Dutch abroad…

The NIHB – Dutch Abroad organization is the initiator of The GOED Foundation and carried out a successful passport campaign in April 2018. With the results of the worldly filled in survey they drew attention to the fact that Dutch people abroad often have to travel thousands of kilometres to renew their passport. If that isn’t enough, they also have to travel long distances to physically retrieve a DigiD activation code (login code for online government services) in the Netherlands or at one of the few available embassies. Is the code not working? Sorry, then you have to travel back to The Netherlands.

Some other examples of failing digitisation;

  • People who receive a pension abroad, have to regularly send the “proof of being alive” form, which is often not digitized and/or coordinated with the various pension funds. If the form is lost in the post or simply arrives too late, a small AOW pension can be blocked for months.
  • Voting from abroad? The ballot paper also has to be returned by post, which can often mean, it does not arrive on time and many votes get lost, as a result.

And so the list goes on…

The loss of the Dutch Nationality

As a rule, you will lose your Dutch nationality if you voluntarily acquire another nationality (there are three exceptions) or of if you’re allowed dual nationality, but don’t renew your passport in time (outside of the EU), you will lose it. There are still too many people who do not realise this. The Court of Justice recently ruled on the Tjebbes case, which creates some hope for people who lost their Dutch Nationality. However, a lawsuit must first be initiated to convince the court that you are in fact Dutch enough. The GOED Foundation strives to realise a general pardon for all Dutch people, who lost their Dutch nationality, without being aware. Those people who have lost their Dutch nationality are often upset and bewildered, and consequently feel betrayed and discriminated against, by the Dutch government.

The GOED Foundation wants to change the mindset of the Political parties who oppose dual nationality and objects to the upcoming new nationality law – ‘moderinisering van de nationaliteitswet’. Which obliges the next generation to choose at 18 years old between the Dutch nationality or another one.

Many emigrants remain strongly connected to the Netherlands, even the second and third generation. The Dutch government should be proud of their Ditch citizens abroad, as many other countries do, but instead they take away their citizenship and economize on and even omit government services.

To summarize, it is about time that Dutch citizens abroad, are valued and treated the same way as their fellow countrymen in the Netherlands.

Please support our cause and register for our newsletter at

The GOED Foundation is a politically neutral interest group for all Dutch people living abroad. The Foundation wants to gain broad support for the promotion of the interests of Dutch nationals abroad, especially with regard to specific obstacles or restrictions that go together with living and / or working abroad and with keeping their Dutch nationality.



Guus Meeuwis in Sydney for Koningsdag 2019


Party with the Dutch on Saturday 27 April in Sydney, Australia. Come to The Big Top for a unique King’s Day (Koningsdag) experience with top selling artist Guus Meeuwis!

Ever witnessed the crazy King’s Day festivities in April in the Netherlands? This year, the fun will be right here in Sydney. What’s King’s Day all about? It’s the day when Dutchies celebrate their beloved Royals. Revellers show their pride wearing bright orange clothing, colourful hats and red-white-blue face paint – the crazier the better! 

On Saturday 27th April, you can join the Dutchies on King’s Day as they take over Luna Park. DJ All Tha Feest will get the festivities started. Then famous Dutch performer Guus Meeuwis will rock the stage with his amazing live band. Grab a beer and some local snacks like bitterballen and party the night away! 

Guus Meeuwis is one of the most popular artists in his home country. Since 1995, he has scored numerous #1 hits such as Het is een nacht… and Per spoor. Between his club tour and sold out stadium concerts, Guus is coming to Australia for this special gig – it’s truly a once in a lifetime event!

For tickets go to

Event: G´day met een zachte G
Date: 27 April 2019
Location: The Big Top Sydney

Doors open: 7pm

You can also follow the Facebook page:

Credit Hans van Brakel

TU Delft researchers going to the Great Barrier Reef


This week a team of researchers from TU Delft, Van Oord and CSIRO are travelling to the Great Barrier Reef to test a new method for the large-scale rehabilitation of coral.

In this rehabilitation method, coral eggs are collected from healthy parts of the reef and the larvae are placed in the location on the reef where they need to grow. Working with coral larvae has been tried and tested on a small scale and in special tanks. 

More information:

The team will be posting about their progress on the TU Delft Instagram account this week, so check out Instagram for more footage on the research!

Republished with permission

What can the Netherlands offer Australia?  Discussing a possible additional function for DACC

Photo: Klaas Woldring: King Willem Alexander in Sydney November 2016 with a group of Dutch organisations representatives.

In this guest post by Klaas Woldring, Ph. D. who is secretary of the Dutch Australian Cultural Centre Ltd. (DACC) in Smithfield, Sydney, Australia, he discusses a possible additional function for the DACC and what the Netherlands could mean for Australia.

In recent commemorations about the Netherlands in Australia, in 2006 and 2016, understandably there was a heavy concentration on the several landings by VOC ships on the Australian coast and the extensive mapping of that coast during the entire 17th century.

The DACC contributed actively to these activities by means of map and heritage item exhibitions, adding thereby to its initial functions of establishing and maintaining an archive, reference library and attractive, educational heritage centre at the back – Holland House, also known as ’t Winkeltje, Smithfield. We also distributed much promotional information much of it provided by the Dutch Embassy and the Australia on the Map Committee. These tasks have been undertaken almost exclusively by volunteers, supported by fairly small numbers of members and, financially, by small donations.

It has occurred to me recently that we could add a new function to this by purchasing, collecting and possibly selling new books about the Netherlands today concentrating on services, expertise and products that would be of interest to Australians generally.

In other words we may consider becoming an Information Centre for that particular purpose as well, a function that is actually covered by our original Mission Statement. Our request for providing some initial funding for this purpose to the Embassy could not be met because the Embassy is of the view that the rules of Shared Heritage, Grants projects do not provide for such funding. Hopefully, this may change in the future.

Such literature, all in English of course and to be targeted very carefully, would provide up to date relevant information about the Netherlands rather than just Dutch/Australian historic interests in the region, mostly relating to the 17th century. As an example:

  • Dutch business interests in Australia and South East Asian region
  • Dutch products and services in demand or to be promoted in Australia
  • Special Dutch expertise and services, private and public, that would be of interest to Australians
  • Dutch expertise in water management such as the Delta Project, river flows and management, also harbour management
  • The threat of drought or urban water shortages in Australia, always present of course, could be reduced considerably by more effective water conservation and/or transport.
  • Dutch experiences with earth gas exploration are conceivably useful for irresponsible fracking exercises
  • Dutch expertise in solar energy is demonstrated here in car races year after year
  • Great advances in climate change approaches which the Dutch Professor Rob Roggema (UTS) recently very well explained in the Cleveringa lecture in Sydney.  The clever management of heavy city traffic in the Netherlands (Randstad) was demonstrated also by him as well.
  • The showmanship and entertainment professionalism of Andre Rieu, also widely acclaimed elsewhere in the world, e.g. the US, UK, Brazil and Australia
  • The fantastic variety of tulips developed and exported to many places in the world, including Canberra
  • Dutch soccer coaches that could be of vital interest to Australian soccer, already proven earlier.
  • There is considerable interest here in the Dutch prison system, e.g. Professor Tony Vinson.
  • There is also great interest here in the Dutch approach to euthanasia. Andrew Denton, a great supporter, has recently studied that in the Netherlands.
  • Books in English about the use of marihuana in the Netherlands would be a real bonus for a Dutch Information Centre in Australia.
  • When it comes to politics the Dutch could provide tremendously important input in Australian society by informing them about a much better electoral system than the single-member-electoral district system inherited from the British, the basic cause of Australia’s adversarial parliamentary system that so many people now rightly complain about.
  • The writings of the celebrated Dutch-American political science Professor Arendt Lijphart would be particularly useful for the locals here. Dutch (and European) alternatives to the Westminster system of recruiting Ministerial competence would be another benefit in the area of governance.
  • The Dutch tripartite system of industrial relations and the Dutch Workplace Relations and Participation system as well the New Act on Work and Security (2014) would be particularly useful information for Australia.
  • When it come to cycling, the Dutch have a wealth of  experience, models, cycles paths, their role in traffic, etc.
  • Even as regards the history of the 17th century we could mention e.g. Simon Schama’s exhaustive study, in English, of the Golden Age and Amsterdam.

Such books should also be available for both lending and selling.

We are not just talking about Sharing Cultural History but also about the business interests that the Dutch Government and Dutch corporations are certainly entirely familiar with – and wish to promote. Australia could use more of that information here, in English, and we could supply that.

Our Centre could be further developed into an Information Centre about the Netherlands preferably positioned in the centre of Sydney. I would think that while providing information of this kind is perhaps a limited function of the Embassy and the Consulates, it could be promoted much more effectively and permanently by a Dutch Information and Heritage Centre. The members of Dutch Link would also be served by that expansion.

Australians are really MUCH more interested in what the Netherlands has to offer NOW than what happened in the 17th century.

While they politely participate in commemorations, like the one last year and in 2006, they don’t really like all that much that the Dutch were here 160 years before James Cook, and actually mapped much of the Coastline long before Matthew Flinders. They say, we developed the continent and you stuck to your interests in the Indies as there were no spices to be found here. We should reflect on that reality. Plugging that too much may not serve Dutch and Dutch Australian interests all that well.

Guest post by: Klaas Woldring, Ph. D., Secretary Dutch Australian Cultural Centre Ltd., Smithfield, Sydney.


Dutch Fine Art Master Jos Kivits Exhibition in Tamborine Mountain, Queensland, Australia


Painter of magnificent Neo-Classical Romantic landscapes and sumptuous Still Life’s in the manner of sixteenth and seventeenth century Dutch and Flemish Masters.


We welcome your interest in the Exhibition of ‘Dutch Fine Art Master Jos Kivits’.  The Grand Opening will be held on Thursday 12th April at Heritage Wines Bartle Rd Tamborine Mountain Qld 4272, Australia.

Jos, currently living a reclusive life on Tamborine Mountain with his family, has decided that it is now time to show a number of his latest works, and some from his private collection. Tamborine Mountain is proud and honoured to have Jos living in our Community.

Born in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, September 1945, Jos (Jozef) was the youngest of five children, a descendant of a well-established Dutch family. The roots of which can be traced back to the early thirteenth Century.  Needing to escape the harsh winters of Europe, Jos immigrated to New Zealand in 1973 where his life as a professional artist can be said to have truly begun.

In late 1986, along with his wife Lydia and their four children, Jos moved to Australia: first establishing a reputable name in Sydney before heading further North in 2004 to settle in Queensland where he now enjoys a much quieter life in semi-retirement.

A student pf the Dutch “Kunstnijverheid’’ school in Eindhoven in the early 1960s Jos continued his in-depth studies throughout the 1970’s & 1980’s under the tutelage of renowned Dutch artist Cornelis Le-Mair. This association led to Jos receiving the highly coveted diploma of “Master Artist in Still Life” in 1989 from the Academy of Fine Arts, Antwerp, Belgium.

A lifetime of training, study, experience and the creation of exquisite Masterpieces has earned Jos an international reputation. His works can be found hanging in public and private collections in Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Japan, North and South America, the United Kingdom, several European Countries & South Africa. 

For more information, please contact Teresa Skirving of Emala Fine Arts Gallery.

New Consul-General of the Netherlands to Australia

A warm welcome to Australia to Frank van Beuningen, the new Consul-General of the Netherlands in Sydney. Frank arrived in Sydney last month. Before his posting Down Under, he worked as a diplomat on special assignments and had several postings, among others in Afghanistan, Germany, Sri Lanka, Iraq, Ivory Coast and Zimbabwe. Besides working on economic diplomacy and trade promotion, Frank has dealt extensively with security policy, counter-terrorism and human rights issues.

In the Netherlands Frank was the co-founder and later director (1998 – 2002) of the Advisory Council on International Affairs, a think tank that advises the Dutch government on a regular basis on all aspects of foreign and security policy. He has a degree in international affairs from the Erasmus University in Rotterdam. Frank is married to Jennie and together they have two adult children.

After having been in Sydney for nearly two weeks, Frank says “he feels like a dog with two tails”. He states: “I am looking forward to working with the team on the optimising of consular services and the potential for Dutch companies to partner with Australian counterparts to achieve sustainable trade and investment for both our countries. I cannot wait to get to know the Dutch community. I am very interested in its history”.

More information can be found here:



DIMEX (Dutch Immigrant’s Experiences) survey – take part before 21 March 2018

EXTENDING THE DIMEX PROJECT – by a Google Survey on-line
Are you a 1st generation Dutch migrant who moved to Australia after 1990 and has lived there for more than two years?  Even if you have returned to the Netherlands you are invited to take part, though this survey is focussed on those who (intended to) migrate, not those on temporary expat contracts.   It does not matter whether you have an Australian passport or not, as we are well aware of the fact that many Dutch migrants do not want to give up their Dutch passport so opt to live in Australia as a Permanent Resident.
The DACC has started to extend the Dutch Immigrants’ Experiences (DIMEX) project, originally a questionnaire for post-WWII Dutch-Australian immigrants, to more recent newcomers, in order to highlight the different circumstances which lead people to take the step to emigrate. This work is being done by DACC Secretary Klaas Woldring in co-operation with Jose van den Akker, Ph. D. who is doing research more specifically about Dutch immigrants who came after 1990.
The original Dutch Immigrants Experiences (DIMEX) project was completed by the DACC some 10 years ago and was an initiative by Jan Joosten (Rembrandt Club, St. Marys) en industrialist Gijs Kommer, who approached the DACC to take it on,  and  made a special donation for the purpose. The Royal Australian Historical Society also made a significant donation. Two thousands copies were distributed in NSW and 307 completed responses were received. A Report was made which is available for the public – and stored in the archive.
The extension has been launched primarily as a Google Survey and is national in character. We also welcome contributions from Dutch people who decided to return to the Netherlands. The URL can be accessed via the DACC website where is found at (under News). We encourage all who are interested to participate. The “on-line” version is available to all, older and younger Dutch migrants to Australia. Hard copies are also available and are being handed out at the DACC at their venue in Smithfield – or can be sent to people not connected to the Internet.
Klaas Woldring,
Jose van de Akker

Grenzeloos Verliefd: verhuis je tussen nu en augustus 2018 voor de liefde naar het buitenland

Voor een nieuw seizoen van het Net5-programma Grenzeloos Verliefd zijn we op zoek naar nieuwe kandidaten! Verhuis je tussen nu en augustus 2018 voor de liefde naar het buitenland? Of ken je iemand die deze stap gaat zetten? Dan horen wij het graag via


Presentation of Dirk Hartog Tulip in Australia

Dirk Hartog Tulip

To mark the Dirk Hartog 2016 anniversary year, the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Canberra is proud to present the official Dirk Hartog tulip.

The Dirk Hartog tulip was presented to His Excellency General, the Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC (Retd), Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia and Her Excellency Lady Cosgrove, by Her Excellency the Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to Australia, Erica Schouten, to show gratitude for the warm relationship with the people of Australia.

Dirk Hartog anniversary year

This year is significant because it marks the 400th anniversary of the first European contact with Western Australia. On 25 October 1616, Dutch Sailor Dirk Hartog made landfall at Dirk Hartog Island in the Shark Bay area, where he left an inscribed pewter plate. To mark this anniversary, many celebrations and commemorations are taking place throughout the year across Australia and the Netherlands.

Dirk Hartog tulip

The Dirk Hartog tulip was cultivated in the Netherlands by Frank Timmerman, owner of plant nursery ‘Goede Tulpen’, which translates as Good Tulips. The tulip, especially selected for its dual shade of orange, has travelled over 16,500 kilometres to be at Floriade in Canberra, which is roughly the same route as Dirk Hartog took to Australia.

Dutch traditions

Floriade was the brainchild of Christiaan Slotemaker de Bruine, a Dutch Landscape Architect in Canberra. He commenced the design of Floriade in 1986 and based it on the world famous ‘Keukenhof’ garden in The Netherlands.

For the celebratory event, the tulip was baptised by the Governor-General, Lady Cosgrove and the Ambassador with special Dirk Hartog wine per Dutch tradition.

Tulips from the Netherlands

Tulips came to the Netherlands in the beginning of the 17th century. A few years after Dirk Hartog died, there was a real ‘tulip mania’ in the Netherlands. Tulips and tulip bulbs were very rare and expensive – some had the same value as a house.

Nowadays, the Netherlands is famous for its horticulture, including leading the export of tulips and tulip bulbs. Horticulture will be one of the topics of conversation during the parallel trade mission later this year, coinciding with the Royal Visit of King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima.

Source: Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Canberra