High School Students Get a ‘Taste’ of the Best Buddies Living Program in Washington, D.C.
According to the report, “A Place in this World,” approximately 75% of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) live with their parents and 62% of those people dream of having their own apartment. Best Buddies Living is an opportunity for people with disabilities to reach that goal.
However, there are certain skills needed to live in an independent living program and the earlier someone can begin practicing those skills, the better! That is why we launched the Best Buddies Living “Sleepover” program this summer.
This program gave six high school age students with IDD the opportunity to get a “taste” of Best Buddies Living and practice their independent living skills. This two-day, two-night program introduced participants to skills like grocery shopping, cooking meals, making a bed, doing laundry, hygiene routines, taking the Metro, and budgeting.
In addition to working on these independent living skills, residents got to experience the freedom of staying overnight in their own bedroom, having apartment-mates and exploring Washington, D.C.
Bobby Whalen, a recent high school graduate and Best Buddies Citizens participant, was one of our Sleepover participants. When asked what his favorite part of the sleepover was, he told us it was, “Getting food from food trucks and having roommates.”
Each of our participants stepped out of their comfort zone, learned some new skills and had fun with the other participants. We hope that they will apply to Best Buddies Living in the future!
In 2019, Best Buddies launched its fourth pillar, Best Buddies Living. The Best Buddies Living program represents one of our organization’s four key mission pillars, Inclusive Living. This program fosters an integrated experience for people with and without IDD to become active, contributing citizens who live independently in a dynamic environment where they can learn, grow, and thrive.
Our current Best Buddies Living program is located in the heart of Washington, D.C. just a mile from Capitol Hill and in walking distance to grocery stores, coffee shops, restaurants, and the local Metro. In this program, adults with disabilities get the opportunity to work on their independent living skills including grocery shopping, budgeting, self-care, utilizing public transportation, cooking meals, doing laundry, cleaning their space, living with a roommate and more. If you’re interested in applying, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.