The Gift of a Rose
Phone calls are a constant in a residential program. Whether it’s the bus matron giving a heads up on an arrival time, a family member calling with a question, or a robocall offering an extended car warranty, the phone is always ringing. Recently, one phone call at YAI’s Foothill residence in Queens brought some heartwarming news.
The mother of someone who lives at the Foothill Residence was diagnosed with a serious illness that required surgery. She has visited her son at Foothill every week for more than 20 years and always believed she and YAI are partners in providing support for him. Over the years, she has also gotten to know many of the direct support professionals (DSPs) who work at Foothill. Her recent call to the residence was to “report an act of kindness” far beyond anyone’s job description.
Rose Darlyene France, a DSP II at Foothill since 2003, proved just how close the relationship between YAI and the families of people we support can be. As Senior Supervisor Bryan Dempsey learned on the call, Rose stepped up to help when the mother mentioned that she needed surgery but had no one to bring her to the appointment. She reported that Rose picked her up before dawn on the day of her surgery, brought her to the hospital, and stayed with her during one of the most frightening times of her life.
Rose was there when she awoke, helped her get dressed, and drove her home. The mother was not able to move her arms, so Rose changed her into comfortable clothing and prepared a meal before a friend of the family arrived to take over.
“Rose was there for me at one of my darkest hours and did things for me when my own family could not help,” the mother said. She could not praise Rose enough and said that she would not have survived without the emotional support provided before the surgery and ever since.
Rose never mentioned anything about the incident to her coworkers. This was no surprise to those who have the pleasure of working with Rose. She is kind, joyful, and self-effacing and regularly goes out of her way for the people she supports and anyone else in need. Rose embodies the partnership YAI has with the people and families we support.