This article is part of the “Stories the Inspire – Independence” series describing the many ways St. Louis Center is helping residents reach their potential through the cultivation of personal INDEPENDENCE.


From Fr. Enzo:

Do you remember the first time you cooked a meal for yourself? Patiently, you learned the skills needed to tackle each task of preparing the meal, and you finally had the chance to bring it all together. That feeling of independence is the ultimate accomplishment of your hard work.

Growing up in Italy after WWII wasn’t easy. Commodities were scarce. There was only a public fountain with running water in my village, none in the houses, and many times it was dry. During those times trucks were delivering the water. One particular day my parents were working in the field and were not home. A truck with water came, I got a couple of containers from the house. After standing in line for some time, I filled them from the truck and brought them home. It gave me a great sense of independence.

Listen as Jacqui talks about Independence College

Independence at St. Louis Center

Your love and support has helped people with I/DD to be resilient and overcome the tough times of 2020 and 2021. You play an important part in each of the St. Louis Center residents’ independence journeys. The residents and staff of the Center thank you!

Jaqui and 9 other residents are anticipating a spring 2022 graduation from Independence College. Through classes and hands on learning experience, the student residents of Independence College are learning skills to gain confidence, cultivate personal growth, and give a sense of purpose through their personal independence goals. Jaqui, who has only been living at the Center a short time, has excelled learning the skills needed for her to live a more independent lifestyle.

Making Independence Happen

The resources provided for the residents of SLC include:

  • Independence College – an SLC taught course in independent living
  • access to community programs such as – school of Chelsea, CMH work groups, Friendship Bible, Special Olympics, Parables, and many more
  • access to jobs in the local community and transportation to jobs in the local community and summer and vocational camps

Benevolent care is the difference between the amount of financial support from the outside and the total cost of care. The average daily cost of one resident to live at SLC is $267. Given the limits of financial support from the government, together with the reality that very few families can afford the total cost of care, SLC strives to offer Benevolent Care to cover the difference. More than half of the total costs must be fundraised to provide a dignified level of care, which includes 24/7 supervision, protection, transportation, meal preparation, medication administration, community involvement, and assistance with other activities of daily life. Your support helps to cover the difference.

How can you help?

Donations are critical to help provide the resources needed for each resident to reach their highest level of potential.

Thank you for the blessings you have given to the Center over the years, your help is truly appreciated. Because of you, the Center has retained a high standard of living for individuals with I/DD.

I ask you today to please help the Center to continue to have the funding to provide the resources for the residents to achieve their greatest potential each and every day.

Fr. Enzo Addari— Fr. Enzo Addari, ScD, CEO, St. Louis Center

In his role as CEO, Fr. Enzo Addari, SdC, has the lead role in meeting the ever-changing needs of the individuals served at St. Louis Center. One of the core Guanellian Mission Principles states that “Every person has an extraordinarily rich reality and even in extreme cases of difficulty, suffering and poverty, there are no “limited persons,” but rather persons with limits. Every person bears a strong desire for continuous development in order to reach his or her full potential.”


Jacqui talks about Independence College.

Read more Stories of Inspiration – INDEPENDENCE


79% of donations received go to the care of the Center’s residents.

According to the 2020 audit, St. Louis Center administrative and overhead expenses were only 21%, in line with well-managed nonprofit best practices. You can be confident that your donation to the Center is going to good use. St. Louis Center is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, Federal Tax ID: 38-6038121.

Give HereYour support helps to provide resources like Independence College. If this or other St. Louis Center Stories of Inspiration – Independence touch your heart, please consider a #benevolentcare donation of any amount by submitting the form below.


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