Hawaii’s First Middle School Student Attends Best Buddies Leadership Conference
The Best Buddies International Leadership Conference (BBLC) has inspired thousands of leaders to be Best Buddies advocates and to bring about social change in their communities. LC is a once in a lifetime experience that unites Best Buddies leaders, volunteers, and community advocates from around the globe.
Conference attendees participate in workshops, seminars, and evening events, where they gain skills and learn how to enhance their own communities by including people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (inclusion). The students (Chapter Presidents and other officers) who attend LC learn how to run the Best Buddies Chapters in their schools.
This year’s 23rd Leadership Conference (again on the beautiful campus of Indiana University) was held during the weekend of July 25-28. A group of twenty-seven people from Best Buddies Hawaii (BBHI) were in attendance including faculty advisors, parents, BBHI staff and 18 wonderful students.
Among the students was BBHI’s very first middle school attendee, Chapter President of Kailua Intermediate, Meghan Edghill Pearson. By Meghan’s online fundraising efforts for this trip, she raised over $1,400 and was the top earner on the Best Buddies Leadership Conference fundraiser site! No word (of mouth) yet from Meghan on her LC experience, but needless to say, she was full of anticipation and excitement.
At the event, keeping with tradition, there were several achievement awards given out during the ‘opening ceremonies’. BBHI’s Kapolei High School Chapter was one of several school chapters recognized and awarded for organizing & holding their (first) Best Buddies Friendship Walk. Congratulations Kapolei High, BBHI Lead Program Manager Liz Torres, and everyone who had a hand in making (also) Hawaii’s very first BB Friendship Walk a success!
Anyone from anywhere not present at BBLC 2014 who had online access was able to view the opening and closing ceremonies, plus the anniversary celebration via online streaming video. It was awesome!