Polk deputy raises $80,000 to help children with speech, hearing impairments

A Polk County deputy had a goal of raising $40,000 for children with speech and hearing problems -- but he raised more than double that.

It was a crowning moment for Lt. Jim Ostojic. 

"Receiving this award has been a great experience for me and I'm very appreciative of everyone who helped get me to this goal," he said. 

Lt. Jim's goal was to raise 40 thousand dollars for Speech and Hearing Center in Polk County. But, the community went above and beyond. 

"I was able to raise $87,897.11," he said.

He raised the money for the Mr. Central Florida campaign, an annual fundraising event for the Speech and Hearing Center. 

"I did it for the kids , did it for the mission and I'm proud of the Speech and Hearing Center fundraiser for the children," he said. "It's very important that we help them." 

He even held a wiffle and kickball tournament to raise money for the center. 

"I think it's important that we not only as law enforcement officers, but as community members that we get out and help others. I thank that's important," Lt. Jim said.

Central Florida Speech and Hearing Center President, Roxann Bonta, says the money will help the more than 90% of children who can't afford the services. 

"He is phenomenal. It brings me to tears to think that he has worked so hard and brought so many people and funds to our cause," Bonta said.

A cause that Lt. Jim is proud to serve and protect. He donated more than 200 hours of his own personal time for this campaign. 

Learn more about Mr. Central Florida by clicking here.