Established in 1982, St Chads provides a unique service for people ages 16 to 64 and of all ethnicities who have a mild to moderate intellectual disability. Over the last 32 years, many Rotorua people and their families have benefited from the service.
St Chads offers both centre and community based programmes to develop and maintain life skills. The key areas which we base our programmes are: daily living skills; education and learning; vocational and work experience; recreation and leisure; socialisation; exercise and healthy living.
St Chads Centre is located at 2 Devon Street, Rotorua. Programmes take place within the centre and out in the community, generally between the hours of 9-3pm weekdays.
Core Purpose and Vision
The services of St Chads are designed to promote social and economic equality for those who have an intellectual disability. Our approach is consistent with the long-standing New Zealand Disability Strategy 2001, which ‘recognises the equal right of all people with disabilities to live in the community with choices equal to any other.’
Our vision is to see “that people with disabilities have the same opportunities as other citizens and receive the support they need to live happily in the community, through long term involvement in meaningful activities, volunteer work, and employment.”
Traditionally the centre was established to provide music sessions as a tool of communication for people with disabilities. From then onwards, the centre became a day activity centre providing a variety of programmes for clients. In 2009, the centre had a change in emphasis, going away from being primarily a day activity centre to becoming a service where individuals obtain training and support to be active citizens, and included in the wider Rotorua community. The centre remains as a meeting place and a venue to nurture abilities, but the primary aim is facilitate: help individuals find satisfying roles and things to do in the wider community.
St Chads’ mission is to serve the people who attend. The organization is people-driven. This means respect and attention to the peoples’ needs, decisions and aims, as well as acknowledging the concerns of those who support them outside of St Chads.
The centre continues to evolve and change each year. Our current focus is on developing social enterprise within St Chads, not only to provide employment opportunities for clients, but also to develop long term financial sustainability for our organisation, by reducing our heavy reliance on government funding and funding bodies.