Lily Rivera is currently employed at our Fleming Island Location. She started there as a child herself many years ago. She has blossomed into a fine young lady who has done numerous service projects to help others. One of her biggest projects has been her involvement in HANDS, an American Sign Language Club at Fleming Island Highschool. Through what she has learned in that club, she was able to make a difference for one particular child on a field trip at our Fleming Island Facility. The little boy exited the bus and was nervous to enter the facility the day of his field trip. Lily picked up on this, could tell that the child was deaf and immediately started “signing.” He wouldn’t leave her side. He was the sweetest, most innocent little boy that she had ever met in her years onsite as an employee. He warmed her heart and told her all about himself and his family, through sign language. No words were spoken, but they had in instant connection. They played together and got to know each other even more that day. Before leaving, he signed that “he was so happy that she was there to sign to him and that he would miss her and try to come back soon!” The little boy even helped correct Lily with a few signs she “goofed up on.” This child has held a special place in Lily’s heart since that day. A few months later, the little boy was back! He was attending another field trip at the same Facility. He leapt off the bus and gave Lily a HUGE hug and signed “do you remember me?” Of course she did, and she signed right back. He lit up. There are no words to express the joy in his eyes at that very moment.
Sometimes we say it best when we say nothing at all! Simply showing up, taking notice and being there for another person, any way we can, makes all the difference in the world! Lily not only made a difference for this child, on two separate visits, but continues to make a difference for others. She attends college currently works at O2B Kids, initiates many service projects and clean ups for her community and actively participates in giving back as often as she can. We are proud to know Lily and also to have her as a part of our team at O2B Kids in Fleming Island.