The spring semester was an exciting time for Best Buddies Indiana! Chapters across Indiana celebrated Best Buddies Month and Spread the Word to End the Word, with ambassador trainings, fun chapter activities, and more!
From my first experience as a middle schooler at my sister’s event to now as a college senior, Best Buddies has helped me to become a more accepting and open individual, a stronger leader, and a better friend.
This year, Indiana’s own Natalie Seibert was recognized as our staff member State Director of the Year for her tremendous efforts in Indiana. Natalie has dedicated the past 11 years to creating inclusive friendships, jobs, and leaders in Indiana.
The Best Buddies Indiana Jobs program helps people with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities overcome employment barriers by working one on one with job seekers and employers to find or create jobs. One of those places is MOD Pizza…
This year the Best Buddies Indiana Gala raised over $320,000! The combined total for all of the 11 Champion teams was over $195,000 raised during the 8 week period. Indiana Rooftop Ballroom graciously hosted the Best Buddies Indiana Gala for the third year in a row.
Peter joined the Best Buddies Jobs Program in the summer of 2018 and was recently hired to work at Meals on Wheels. When asked about his favorite part of the job, Peter exclaimed, “Everything! I can’t pick just one thing.”
“My favorite part of Best Buddies is developing new friendships and seeing everyone interact with each other. I absolutely love seeing the smiles on everyone’s faces when our chapter comes together for our monthly events”
It’s been an exciting first couple months of the school year as chapters have held call-out meetings, match parties, and recruitment events to tell all their friends about how fun it is to be in Best Buddies!
The Best Buddies Friendship Walk: Indianapolis took place on Sunday, April 22 at White River State Park, with more than 2000 people in attendance. Proceeds from the Best Buddies Friendship Walk provide the primary support for programs throughout Indiana.
“Having a friend is important to me because it helps me have a more positive attitude and focus on the good things. I want to thank Morgan for also introducing me to her workplace and helping get connected to a volunteer opportunity I really like.”
Best Buddies International, Special Olympics partner annually for Spread the Word to End the Word® Day. This internationally initiative aims to build awareness for society to stop and think about its use of the R-word and rally people to pledge respect toward all individuals, making the world a more accepting and inclusive place for all people.
Best Buddies has given our Jeremiah David the unexpected gift of acceptance and belonging. We didn’t pray for this, nor did we solicit it, yet we have embraced it and are eternally thankful. Best Buddies has given our 16-year-old with exceptional needs his first true friends.
Best Buddies has given Angie the opportunity to become a great leader and to know what true friendship is. Being a buddy director, a buddy ambassador, and an intern for Best Buddies Indiana has developed Angie’s leadership skills.
With a friendly disposition and kind heart, Zach Curtis has been such an influential Ambassador for Best Buddies. From Fishers, IN, he has been a part of Best Buddies in Middle School, High School, and now in the Butler University Chapter, where he serves as Buddy Director.
The benefits of RJ working at TCC extend far beyond the workplace. RJ’s mom Jodi Zeph quickly expresses the confidence that RJ now has in his everyday life. She is delighted that his social interactions have increased.
The end of November and December came with lots to be thankful for, holiday cheer, and leadership development for Best Buddies Indiana. Here is a recap of our holiday activities and the fall ambassador training!
The past two weekends have held lots of excitement for Best Buddies Indiana: the 2017 annual Friendship Ball, and the 2017 Champion of the Year wrap-up, Party with a Purpose. Read on for a recap of each of these exciting events!
Climbing on a fire truck, cleaning light bars from emergency vehicles, taking photos of commercial cooking stoves, chatting with the Mayor, setting up online auctions, sorting a couple hundred recycled three ring binders, collecting parking ticket fines…these are just some of the tasks Matt Burns may encounter in his job as a clerk with the City of Indianapolis.
The Best Buddies Friendship Walk: Indianapolis took place on Sunday, April 23 at White River State Park, with more than 2000 people in attendance. It was a day filled with the energy of friendship! Participants were greeted by David Quilleon, Senior VP of Global Mission, State Development, and Operations for Best Buddies International
In preparation for April 23rd’s Best Buddies Friendship Walk and 5K competitive run, the BBFW committee hosted a kick-off at the training facility of the Indianapolis Colts. Over 75 people attended representing 8 Middle Schools, 15 High Schools, and 5 Colleges. The morning event helped teams create their own walk fundraising strategies through many activity stations.
Indiana’s Best Buddies Jobs program recently received a Three-Year Accreditation from CARF International which represents the highest level of accreditation that can be given to an organization and shows the organization’s substantial conformance to the CARF standards for a provider of supported employment services.
We are honored to welcome the OrthoIndy Foundation as our presenting friendship walk sponsor. Over 2000 of our friends are expected to join together at Celebration Plaza at White River State Park to walk or run for inclusion. Most will choose to participate in the two-mile fitness walk along the river, but if you’re a runner, be sure to sign up for the timed 5K Run along the Canal.
The Best Buddies 15th Anniversary Gala: A Celebration of Friendship took place on Saturday, March 4 at the Indiana Roof Ballroom. Over 300 guests attended, enjoying silent and live auctions, a raffle of a beautiful diamond ring sponsored by Master Jewelers, dinner, dancing, and a program emceed by Eric Halvorson.
In February, several members of the Citizen’s Program met at the ArtMix studios at the Harrison Center for the Arts to participate in a candle decorating project. Led by Jobs Program supervisor and craft aficionado Kim Harvey, fifteen Citizen’s Program Participants donned protective gloves and nurtured their inner Impressionist as they inked over 100 gorgeous candles…
On November 3, 2016 Best Buddies held its annual fall ambassador training. This year we held our training at Duke Realty and Duke Employees volunteered as speech coaches. 10 Best Buddies Participants from different schools and programs learned what it meant to be a Best Buddies Ambassador and advocate for themselves and others.
With funding and support from the Indiana Governors Council for People with Disabilities, Best Buddies Indiana was able to partner with the Close Up Foundation to send six Buddy pairs to Washington D.C. for five night full-immersion experience into American history and politics.
Best Buddies Indiana was selected through the Colts Community Ticket Block program to receive ten tickets to the Colts vs. Chargers game on September 25! This allowed five of our buddy pairs to attend the game together. The tickets also included a pre-game field visit, a photo opportunity on the field, a custom hat for each participant and a meal voucher.
The Best Buddies Mission is alive and well in Lafayette, IN with well over 250 active program participants spanning across two high schools and one university. There are currently three school friendship programs, Lafayette Jefferson High School, West Lafayette High School and Purdue University, which provide buddies and their peers […]
In August, WTHR 13 reached out to Best Buddies Indiana to run a story featuring one of our Buddy Pairs. As Emily Novicki and Madison Peterman were awarded the title of 2016 Buddy Pair of the Year, they were a perfect choice for the friendship feature.
Champion of the Year is an annual eight-week fundraising competition organized by Best Buddies Indiana, featuring a select group of professionals. These philanthropic trailblazers compete to raise the most funds for BBIN and the individual who raises the most money at the end of the competition earns the coveted title […]
The 3rd annual Best Buddies Indiana Friendship Ball took place on Saturday, November 7th, 2015 at Brownsburg West Middle School. The theme this year was Reflections of Friendship and over 700 chapter members from across the state attended this magical evening. Attendees were able to enter into a raffle by […]
On Sunday, November 8th, Pendleton Heights High School (PHHS) Best Buddies hosted a Respect Walk and Challenge Run at Falls Park. Over 180 people, including students from surrounding Best Buddies chapters, showed up to support the mission of Best Buddies. What a great way to spread awareness in the community! […]
“Before joining Best Buddies, I was miserable and spent much of the time in my room at home alone. In the last ten years, my life has changed for the better and I now have many friends to depend on and I am making an impact in my community. Because […]
On Saturday, September 26th Best Buddies Indiana held the annual Local Leadership Training Day at IU Health Neuroscience Center in conjunction with Eunice Kennedy Shriver Day. The inspirational day provided an opportunity for local high school and middle school officers and advisors to come together to receive valuable training and […]
“Can you imagine life without friends? I can, because Best Buddies was not available in Indiana when I was in school. I had a supportive family, but I missed having someone in school to say ‘hi’ to in the halls, to sit with at lunch, to talk about my day […]