I always knew my job was important. Because you are the first that the child sees in the morning when he leaves the house and the last in the evening before coming home. But when Covid-19 hit, I felt really bad because it was the first time in 30 years that I wasn’t able to provide services to children in one way or another.
Then my boss, the head of the transport department, asked me to participate in a new program launched by the district, a bus tour. We went out in the neighborhoods, distributed school supplies, books, boxes of vegetables. We traded laptops. We gave information about a lot of things going on that a lot of parents didn’t even know existed in Baltimore City.
One day, the tour operator said to me, “One thing I love about you is that you don’t sit down to drive a bus. We loaded the bus and unpacked it ourselves.
When I was on this tour, I wanted to leave a good impression. I like to see happy children. And if giving them a notebook makes them happy, I wanted to give it to them. The parents were happy too. We heard a lady say, “I’m ready to go home and make some soup with this box of vegetables.
And I got involved in more district outreach activities. We made a re-engagement for dropouts, who were invited to come back to school. They put four or five kids in grade 12. It was nice to be a part of it.
I saw the impact all the time, especially the smiles on the faces of the little people. You sometimes ask them, “What do you plan to do after you graduate from high school?” And some kids will tell you exactly what they intend to be, and some kids just say, “I haven’t thought about it until then. But the next time the bus tour arrives, I can tell you.
And they’re used to seeing us now. I can be in a market, and a child will come up to me and say, “I know you from somewhere. I tell them, “I am the bus driver for the bus tour. And they say, “Oh, yeah! “