Monday, October 31, 2016

The October Varsity FBC Project: Best Buddies

Varsity FBC is in year three of advanced friendship bracelet making. Our team includes 43 girls from around HSE and across the Midwest. One of our goals is to provide opportunities for these girls to partner together to do small things with great love. Each month I'm going to give them a project where they can make bracelets for a cause. Together we can make a bigger impact than if we were trying to do it on our own.

Best Buddies International is a nonprofit organization dedicated to establishing a global volunteer movement that creates opportunities for one-to-one friendships, integrated employment and leadership development for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. 

I first learned about Best Buddies when I moved to Indy after college. I heard about HS students involved in the club who were spending their time hanging out with their special needs buddies both in and out of school. It blew me away and I wanted to know more. Some of them spend a class period working with these students, they go on outings, they give their buddy a ride to Young Life and in every case they form an authentic, genuine friendship.

This month, Varsity FBC has made friendship bracelets for buddies at HSE High School. I've got to know friends like Grace and Gracie, but most of these pals I haven't had the privilege of meeting yet. Our friend Hannah Dillon is the president of Best Buddies and will help distribute the bracelets to our friends.

Kaylee told me, "I fell in love with Best Buddies because of all the happiness in the room. I have met so many people and my heart is filled with joy when I see everyone smiling so big. Their impact on me is humongous and I can't describe how it feels."

Rachel Buckingham said, "Best Buddies is just an amazing social program which will truly give you your friends for life. Just being able to be apart of bridging the gap between disabled and non-disabled students is huge. If it weren't for Best Buddies and the Peer Tutoring program, these students would be isolated and distant from the rest of the school. But with Best Buddies, I got to go through my school day with them and be part of their lives. I got to know them and saw a whole different side of life. It's the most eye opening and life changing experience. I truly came out of it with my best friend for life."

Bracelets this month were made by Mollie Krone, Sophie Sams, Rachel Kent, Brooklyn Seagrave, Makenna Hoftiezer, Carolyn Nohren, Brooke Ratliff, Sarah Wright, Ellen Baker, Grace Eckhardt, Claire Shumaker, Izzie Wallace, Kate Shreck, Ellyn Hessong, Cassidy Ogan, Payton Snyder, Caroline Shumaker, Kendall Herron and Liza Herron

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