February 10, 2014
If you’re driving with Peter, you’ll first notice his sweet and gentle spirit. He’s soft-spoken, quick to smile, and always ready to help. He’s part of our Acres of Love Transport Team, and one of his daily tasks is to drive children to and from school. Some jump into his van with loads of energy, others are a bit sleepy. The kids refer to our transport team as uncles, and these uncles are another important layer of family for our children. It’s obvious that Uncle Peter has a rapport with the kids, as their faces light up when he arrives in their drive.
For Peter, one of the highlights of carpool is when he picks up the children he refers to as his VIP’s (very important passengers). These VIP’s are the most vulnerable children we serve, living with Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, Paralysis, or other conditions. And you can tell it is an honor for Peter to carefully lift each of them out of their specialized chairs and into car seats in the Acres van. Once they’re buckled in, Peter drives them to their private school, a place focused on helping children with special needs thrive. Once they arrive, Peter lifts them out of the van, and into their chairs to begin the day. At the end of the school day, Peter does this routine all over again, with a smile on his face, and kind words for each child. These small tasks are done with love and grace, and make a world of difference to our children. When he refers to his VIP’s, you can see it’s a term of endearment and respect. And it’s clear that Peter isn’t just driving a van around town. He’s living out a life of calling and service for the children at Acres of Love.
Many of our VIP’s have come to us after being stigmatized by extended family or caregivers. Many have been abused, mistreated, or abandoned because of their special needs status. But for Peter, and the rest of our team, it is our honor and calling to be able to offer them the very best care, along with unconditional love.