Sam lives in a group home run by Link Wentworth in partnership with Supported Independent Living provider Cerebral Palsy Alliance.
I’m 34, I was born in Tamworth but raised in Sydney. I almost died when I was born. They told both my parents that I wouldn’t live past 24 hours.
I’ve been here eight years. It doesn’t feel like a group home, it feels like a big family. I get on well with all the staff and residents. Whenever I’ve been out, it’s really good to get back and see everyone. They always welcome me home which feels really nice.
They make it so much fun. There’s always so much going on. Sometimes we do art and craft. Sometimes we get out and about in the community for coffee and things like that. In the middle of COVID in 2020, our carers made Easter hats with us and put on a little Easter parade at the home. That really lifted our spirits when we couldn’t get out and do much because of the lockdowns.
I didn’t used to bake or cook, but now I do those things a lot. Whenever we are short staffed, I go and see what I can do to help. Through that I’ve actually discovered I quite like cooking. It’s nice to feel like I’m valued and I can make a contribution in this way.
I work at Packforce. I have to get up at 6am to get to work on time because it takes me a while to get ready, and the drive can be really long. It can be tiring some days, but I enjoy it and I really love the people I get to work with.
I’ve always had pets, including my beautiful budgie Blue who sadly passed away a few years back. I had him six years. He was my best friend. I’d love to find a job someday where I get to work with animals.
This article originally appeared in the December 2022 edition of Link Wentworth’s resident newsletter