Best Buddies International To Host Its Best Buddies Challenge: Miami And 24th Annual Best Buddies Gala: Miami Benefiting Individuals With Intellectual & Developmental Disabilities
Gala will Celebrate Best Buddies International’s Programs in Qatar and Honor Best Buddies Global Ambassador Cindy Crawford with the 2022 ‘Spirit of Friendship’ Award
MIAMI, November 17, 2022 – Best Buddies International, a global volunteer movement dedicated to creating opportunities for one-to-one friendships, integrated employment, leadership development, and inclusive living for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), is thrilled to present its 24th Annual Best Buddies Gala: Miami at Ice Palace Studios on Friday, November 18.
The Gala celebrates Best Buddies’ mission and honors the dedication of supporters, participants, and volunteers who help create a more inclusive and accepting world. The event will feature a cocktail hour, gourmet dinner, live and silent auctions, and a special performance by DJ Khaled.
This year, Best Buddies is proud to award Best Buddies Global Ambassador Cindy Crawford with the Spirit of Friendship Award, Best Buddies’ highest accolade presented to distinguished luminaries who have shown a spirit of generosity and friendship in supporting the organization’s mission. For more than 25 years, Cindy has served as an incredible advocate, friend, and dedicated supporter of Best Buddies and its mission to create a more inclusive world for people with disabilities.
“The Best Buddies Gala: Miami and Champion of the Year celebrates the united efforts that make Best Buddies’ mission possible,” said Anthony K. Shriver, founder, chairman & CEO of Best Buddies International. “This year’s event will recognize our incredible milestones over the past three decades and highlight the inspiring and powerful community we serve. We’re also proud to honor our Global Ambassador Cindy Crawford with the 2022 Spirit of Friendship Award. Cindy’s exemplary advocacy and commitment to our cause is undoubtedly making this world a better place for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities.”
Best Buddies has added an exciting new Champion of the Year element to this year’s Gala. Champion of the Year is a competitive fundraising campaign that unites and recognizes the community’s most active leaders of inclusion. Champion Candidates commit to raising funds and awareness over a 10-week campaign— culminating in the crowning of the Champion of the Year or the person who raises the most funds for Best Buddies!
The celebration of inclusion kicks off Friday morning with the Best Buddies Challenge: Miami Chaired by Kenneth C. Griffin Charitable Fund and presented by Andrew P. Barowsky Foundation, Core Hydration and Mack Cycle & Fitness in South Beach. The world-class 80-mile cycling event features a premium experience with a motorcycle police-escorted peloton and will be led by four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome, and professional cyclists Magnus Sheffield and Cameron Wurf.
As a result of phenomenal support from generous sponsors and donors, Best Buddies is able to continuously extend its reach globally and will continue to develop its presence through its nine formal programs— Best Buddies Ambassadors, Citizens, Colleges, e-Buddies®, High Schools, Jobs, Middle Schools, Promoters and Inclusive Living — across the United States and in 47 countries and territories. Proceeds from the Challenge and Gala will allow Best Buddies to continue making a meaningful impact in the lives of individuals with special abilities on a global scale.
The following sponsors and Gala Committee members have demonstrated the true spirit of giving and their belief in the Best Buddies mission through their generosity and commitment: Micky and Madeleine Arison Family Foundation, Andrew P. Barowsky Foundation, Braman Miami, Cabinets to Go, Core Hydration, The Ferraro Law Firm, Kenneth C. Griffin Charitable Fund, Klingman & Associates, Mack Cycle & Fitness, The Meehan Family, Park West Foundation, The Rubin Family Foundation, Sterling Foundation Management, Sun Capital Partners Foundation, The Sundheim Family, Sandy & Tony Tamer, The Winter Family, WSVN 7News, Haute Living Magazine and The Zoley Family.
ABOUT BEST BUDDIES INTERNATIONAL:
Best Buddies® is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to establishing a global volunteer movement that creates opportunities for one-to-one friendships, integrated employment, leadership development and inclusive living for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Founded in 1989 by Anthony Kennedy Shriver, Best Buddies is a vibrant organization that has grown from one original chapter to nearly 3,000 middle school, high school, and college chapters worldwide. Today, Best Buddies’ nine formal programs — Middle Schools, High Schools, Colleges, Citizens, e-Buddies®, Jobs, Ambassadors, Promoters and Inclusive Living — engage participants in each of the 50 states and in 47 countries, positively impacting the lives of nearly 1 million people with and without disabilities around the world. In many cases, as a result of their involvement with Best Buddies, people with intellectual and developmental disabilities secure rewarding jobs, live on their own, become inspirational leaders, and make lifelong friendships.