CI Hero: Bloomington custodian prioritizes the health of students, helps build beds for children in need

CI Heroes

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. (WMBD) — A Bloomington school maintenance steward is answering a custodial call to put children’s educational success first and working to contribute more than a sanitized learning environment.

This week’s CI Hero segment highlights Benjamin Elementary’s Robert Bosquez.

“My day starts with cleaning the gym…to make sure that’s all disinfected and then cleaning up after breakfast,” said Bosquez. “Setting up for lunch. We have our lunch. I’m cleaning up after lunch. My favorite is always lunch.”

His principal purpose is more than providing clean tables during lunchtime.

“I treat all the students here like my own. I have three of my own and a granddaughter. So, it’s just an extension of my family.”

robert bosquez

In his free time, he chooses to spend time in his community building beds, desks, and other items that are essential to emulate student success. Bosquez’s decade dedication to the school helped him see a need. In this quest, he’s helped to provide more than 120 beds in 2019 through the West Bloomington Revitalization Project’s Bed Blitz.

“A student will not be successful if he doesn’t have a good night’s sleep,” said Bosquez. “So unfortunately here in Bloomington-Normal, there are students that don’t have a bed. When we’re able to provide that bed and they know, like maybe that’ll be their first time ever sleeping in a bed…I mean, that right there does it for me.”

The school’s principal said his work, both on and off the clock, fortifies core values.

“I think he’s just quick to help others and see those needs,” said Principal Marlys Bennington. “He’ll do whatever people need to make their day better make their job better and easier.”

Bosquez also spends available days at Bloomington’s Tool Library. It’s a free tool lending program.

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