Centacare has been providing disability and mental health supports in South Australia for more than 30 years. On International Day of People with Disability, we talk to Chris Young who is building  independence at Sanctus House, Noarlunga.


Chris Young lives by a simple rule of life: make the most of your abilities and don’t hold back!

“Have a positive mind and try not to have negative thoughts,’’ adds the 40-year-old, who has cerebral palsy.

For the past six years, Chris has been building his independence at Sanctus House, Noarlunga, where he lives with two friends.

By his own admission, he’s come a long way with the support of dedicated staff, who have helped him to pursue personal interests and hone new skills.

When he’s not cheering on his beloved Adelaide Crows, Chris can be found in the kitchen devising recipes with produce grown in the garden he established from scratch.

Tomatoes, rhubarb, capsicum, baby carrots, parsley, and snow peas are some of the rich pickings he’s cultivated from three raised beds.

There are lemon and peach trees too. At their base lie small rocks emblazoned with motivational messages Chris and his friends crafted during the COVID-19 lockdown.

“I love looking after my garden and taking care of nature,’’ he says.

A graduate of scosa’s Maximum Potential Leadership Program, Chris takes pride in helping others to push their own boundaries and build confidence.

An uncle of seven and one of six children, he regularly keeps in touch with family and friends, and is putting his evolving technical and digitals skills to use by managing his social and medical diaries.

Sanctus House provides 24/7 supported accommodation for five adults across two neighbouring houses.

“We can make our own choices here, and the staff are very nice and helpful,’’ Chris says.

Today is International Day of People with Disability (IDPwD) which is held on 3 December each year. IDPwD is a United Nations observed day celebrated internationally. It aims to increase public awareness, understanding and acceptance of people with disability and celebrate their achievements and contributions.