A big shout-out to Yusuff Atanda, a direct support professional at HeartShare’s Ralph Avenue group home, for leading the team, including Residence Coordinator Keisha Briggs and Program Coordinator Pedro Vargas, that helped save the life of resident Peter, who was in the final stages of kidney failure and refused to receive dialysis over many years. When HeartShare took over the program from another organization, staff immediately noticed the toll that his condition was taking on his quality of life.
During a medical appointment, Peter was told that it was only a matter of time before the disease would take its final toll. Without dialysis, his body would shut down. While respecting Peter’s wishes, the HeartShare team was having a difficult time watching Peter suffer. The team allayed Peter’s fears about dialysis treatment by reviewing different options. Most importantly, the team said it’d be there with him every step of the way.
Peter went through the process and had the comfort and company of Yusuff. As promised, Yusuff did not move from the door of Peter’s hospital room.
After the dialysis treatment, Peter almost immediately had color in his face and the energy to be himself again.
“I’m glad that I did it,” Peter said since starting dialysis three days every week.
Yusuff, among other director support professionals at HeartShare, were honored at the Everyday Heroes Storytelling Celebration hosted by HeartShare on May 4 at St. Finbar’s Auditorium in Bensonhurst.
Standing O is happy to give Yusuff and the staff a big yellow O, too!
HeartShare Human Services of New York (12 MetroTech Center in Downtown, www.heart