As the school year comes to a close, many clubs and programs are wrapping up with end of the year activities. This past weekend I attended two Best Buddies events. I was fortunate to represent EPHS along with a group of fellow students.
For anyone who is not familiar with Best Buddies, the mission of the program is to create a global volunteer movement that creates opportunities for one-to-one friendships, integrated employment, and leadership development for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
On Saturday night, I attended The Kandoo Band Concert that was sponsored by the Wheeler School, but took place here at EPHS. I saw this band last summer when I attended the Best Buddies International Leadership Conference in Indiana. The band is made up of six individuals who live with Wellesley’s Syndrome. They sing their own renditions of various known songs and also make their own songs. One of their original songs is “Take the Diss Out.” The song speaks about taking the “dis” out of disability and about the awareness of people who have disabilities. Many members from our Best Buddies chapter also attended the concert and had a great time.
Sunday morning was the annual Best Buddies Friendship Walk in Garden City, Cranston. The purpose of the walk was to raise funds to continue with the Best Buddies programs throughout the state. People from all Best Buddies chapters in Rhode Island attended the walk and it was a very enjoyable morning. There were various activities going on before the walk such as a Zumba session. Many students in the EPHS Best Buddies program enjoyed the dancing.
The Best Buddies program, now in its second year at EPHS, has been a real success. This year, I am happy to serve as the Chapter President. My favorite part of any day at EPHS is visiting the students in special education rooms and putting a smile on their faces – as the never fail to put a smile on my face.
Although I am sad to be leaving Best Buddies at EPHS, I will be involved in the program in the fall in college. I believe strongly in the Best Buddies mission and I really hope to see the program continue in the coming years here at EPHS. I ask all EPHS underclassmen to consider joining Best Buddies next year so that we will continue to enrich all of our the lives.
We Are Best Buddies.