Lifting up and celebrating businesses, organizations, and individuals in and around Osceola County that are making a positive difference is at the core of what Positively Osceola does. One such organization is The Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Florida, which is located in Kissimmee.
The following is a story written by one of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Florida’s many success stories, Abid, a club, and junior staff member.
December 6, 2017 is a day that is really important to me. Not only is it my birthday, a day that I didn’t know if I wanted to celebrate anymore at one point, but it is also the first day I arrived at my Boys & Girls Club and the day I found hope.
My family is proudly from Puerto Rico! I was born and raised right here in Osceola County by my mother who has sacrificed so much for me. Despite the long, hard hours she worked, we still had to move a lot due to financial issues. I didn’t help much either, because there were times we had to move because of my bad behavior as well.
I remember getting straight “F’s” at times throughout grades one through five. By the time I reached the sixth and seventh grade, my behavior really took a downturn. We were living in St. Cloud and I started getting in a ridiculous amount of trouble, doing terrible in school and always involved in a fight. We were even evicted from our St. Cloud home because I fought a family member of our landlord.
We moved to Poinciana and I was later transferred to Discovery Intermediate School. Hoping things may get better, my behavior got worse. I remember one day my mom and I were in the car after she had to pick me up at school for fighting again. She looked at me straight in the eyes and simply begged “Please don’t get in any more trouble. Try your best, Abiud”. I felt so bad. My mom was so sad.
I finally had reached the boiling point. I was so tired; of fighting, of getting in trouble, and of disappointing my mother … tired of living. It was around that time I decided I was going to end my life. My feelings of self-worth were so low that ending everything seemed like the only option.
Eventually, we moved to Kissimmee. It was in that moment the light was turned on and a friend recommended I go to this place called Boys & Girls Club. I ended up alone and too afraid to walk in the front door, but the next day, I gained the courage to return. The Club changed me the moment one of the staff members told me “you can talk to me”. I know it may not seem like a big deal, but from being alone on my birthday to having someone take time out of their day to listen to what I have to say showed me something that changed my life.
The relationships I built over the last three years saved my life. It takes a lot for me to trust, but Ms. Arianna and Ms. Julianna were two of the staff members I could always talk to and joke around with. In the beginning, I gave Mr. Nicco, our Club Director, a little trouble. But he has been there for me in times I needed him the most. The relationships I have built with all of them have inspired me to be a better person.
My Club also helped me look inside myself and explore other personal talents I had. I got involved with a really cool music program and the more I learned about music, the more I was able to openly express how I felt and control the anger issues I struggled with.
I discovered with the support of my Club Staff that I had leadership potential. As Junior Staff, I help plan Club activities and parties as well as do presentations and peer counseling. It means a lot to me that they saw these things in me and pushed me to develop them. I’m proud to say I now make A’s and B’s in my classes thanks to homework help.
I’m not certain what professional path I will take in the future but whatever it is, I want to make sure I can help other youth like myself dealing with emotional issues. Pay close attention – my name is Abiud, I am a Face of the Future and I’m here to make an unforgettable change in the world, like my Club did for me.
Abuid is just one of The Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Florida’s many success stories, and we are glad to be able to share his story. For more information about The Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Florida, go to https://www.bgccf.org