Best Buddies in New York Runs for Inclusion in New York City Marathon
New York City, NY, November 21, 2023 — Best Buddies International, a nonprofit dedicated to creating opportunities for friendship, employment, leadership development and inclusive living for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), asks its participants to support its mission by walking at their local Best Buddies Friendship Walk.
Best Buddies in New York participants, however, decided to up the ante by running instead of walking. And this was not just any run: Team Best Buddies ran 26.2 miles in the famed New York City Marathon.
“My college buddy and I talked about running all of the time,” Samantha Bellina, who has been involved in Best Buddies since high school, said. “It was a great way to reconnect and talk about the race.”
Team Best Buddies, which fielded 16 runners at the marathon, has raised $60k and is hoping to raise an additional $15k by the end of the year. This would contribute to the over $290k the runners have raised since Best Buddies in New York became a New York Road Runners Marathon Charity Partner in 2016. These funds go directly to assist all 163 of Best Buddies in New York’s Friendship chapters, 60 Best Buddies Jobs participants and 50 Best Buddies Transitions program participants.
“Running with Team Best Buddies in the New York City Marathon helps to bring us closer to a more inclusive world,” Sophie Dubuisson, Best Buddies in New York’s state director, said.
While most Team Best Buddies members ran for the challenge, all of them ran because of the value they find in the Best Buddies mission of inclusion.
“If I was going to run the marathon, I was going to run it for an organization I am really passionate about,” Bellina said. “I had never considered not running for Best Buddies, and it was a life-changing experience.”
To learn more or contribute to Team Best Buddies, click here.
About Best Buddies
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 (IDD). Founded in 1989 by Anthony K. 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’ 11 formal programs — Elementary Schools, Middle Schools, High Schools, Colleges, Citizens, e-Buddies®, Jobs, Ambassadors, Promoters, Transitions and Inclusive Living— engage participants in each of the 50 states and in 49 countries, positively impacting the lives of nearly one 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. For more information, please visit www.bestbuddies.org or connect with us via Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.
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