Sarah and Lisa D.

Gordon Family YMCA

Staff and members alike will probably recognize Sarah riding her bike into work, but Child Watch participants will recognize her anywhere in the community.

“I love it when kids come up to me and say hi to me, both in and outside of the Y,” said Sarah. Sarah has been working in Child Watch since last year after spending a whole school year as a volunteer. When she was officially hired onto the team, both she and her mother Lisa were elated.

“Sometimes people don’t realize how much Sarah can do,” Lisa said of her daughter, who is active in the Special Olympics and whose basketball team won gold at the recent tournament. “Here, you treat everyone equally and give her the opportunity to shine. When I see my daughter come home from work, she feels like she is truly part of the team.”

Sarah is beloved by the children she works with in Child Watch, and often takes the pictures they have colored for her home to hang up on her wall. “I’ve always wanted to work with children,” she says. “I’m happy where I work, and I know it’s not like that everywhere.”

Sarah hopes to continue her work at the Y and eventually be a preschool teacher. Her can-do attitude is appreciated by her fellow staff members and coworkers. “As someone with a learning disability myself, I know it’s hard out there, and sometimes Sarah has been overlooked by her employers,” says Lisa. “Thanks for giving her a chance to see what she can do.” As Child Watch staff and participants can attest, we are lucky to have her at Gordon!