Celebrating Homegrown Leaders: The Inspiring Journey of Boys Town's Family Home Summer Recreation Specialists

In the heart of Boys Town North Florida, two remarkable individuals, Cece and Daria, are shaping the summer experiences of the young residents with a touch of nostalgia. As Family Home Summer Recreation Specialists, they bring an extra layer of significance to their roles – both grew up at Boys Town as the biological children of Family-Teachers who dedicated themselves to shaping young lives.

For Cece, Boys Town has been an integral part of her life since the age of five when her parents joined as Family-Teachers. After graduating from Godby High School in 2022, she moved out of Tallahassee for the first time to attend college. However, her love for Boys Town drew her back, and she found herself working as a Summer Recreation Specialist, now for the second year in a row, crafting memorable activities and outings for the kids.

Daria's story is equally woven into the fabric of Boys Town's history. Born while her parents were Family-Teachers at the Central Florida campus, she spent her formative years in the nurturing embrace of Boys Town until her family moved to Tallahassee when she was around nine. After completing high school with honors, Daria's passion for Boys Town brought her back to work as a Summer Recreation Specialist before she embarks on her college journey, committed to giving back to the place that molded her.

Their favorite memories are filled with joyous moments shared with the kids on campus. Together, they shared a cherished memory of a playful hide-and-seek escapade where both Cece and Daria hid on campus without telling anyone, only to be found by the boys during dinner, with their beloved family dog, Julie, joining in on the fun by licking all the dinner plates clean.

Growing up at Boys Town has taught both Cece and Daria invaluable life lessons. For Daria, it instilled a sense of resilience and assertiveness, determined to be a leader who positively influences others. Meanwhile, Cece learned the power of empathy, becoming a warm and caring individual through her experiences with the children on campus.

Their shared love for Boys Town and knowledge of what makes the kids tick drove them to apply for the Summer Recreation Specialist positions. Working closely with their parents and families, they are passionate about planning engaging activities that resonate with the kids' interests and bring smiles to their faces.

Cece finds joy in witnessing the genuine enthusiasm of the kids during the activities, while Daria treasures the opportunity to connect with the kids on a deeper level, enjoying dinner at their homes and discussing day-to-day matters.

Both Cece and Daria share a common sentiment about Boys Town – it is a special place with transformative power, yet they wish more people knew about the incredible work being done here. They take every opportunity to educate others about Boys Town's mission and the impact it has on young lives.

As they prepare for the holidays, they reminisce about the cherished traditions they shared with the kids on campus, making holidays feel like home for everyone. From the excitement of opening presents in age order to watching the annual Turkey Bowl, their memories are a testament to the strong sense of family that defines Boys Town.

Cece and Daria's inspiring journeys showcase the enduring legacy of Boys Town and the potential for every child to become a leader and make a difference in their own lives and the lives of others. Their passion, dedication and love for Boys Town continue to shape a brighter future for the young residents, nurturing the very essence of family and resilience that Boys Town stands for.​