Outstanding New Hampshire Buddies
Maggie Lemay and Lauren Hoepp are an outstanding buddy pair in our Citizens Adult Friendship Program here at Best Buddies in New Hampshire. Our Citizens Program creates one-to-one friendships between adults with and without intellectual or developmental disabilities (IDD) in the community.
When Maggie first got involved with Best Buddies, she had assumed that the individuals with IDD would receive the most benefit from a one-to-one friendship. However, through getting closer with Lauren, she has realized that she was the one who needed the friendship most. Maggie can genuinely say that she has found her best friend in Lauren, and that her life has changed because of it.
For Lauren, things felt isolated and lonely before she found Best Buddies. She was bullied and often left on the sidelines without many friends. In her words,
“Maggie has really changed by life for the better…To be matched with a buddy means the world to me…They don’t see us with a disability, they see our ability.”
From nightly FaceTime conversations to road tripping to Chicago for Lauren’s Miss Amazing pageant, these two always find a way to create fun memories together. They are there for each other to be silly and have fun, but also to share their worries and be supportive.
The best parts of these friendships are not limited to simply having someone to call to say hello, but it is about having someone who can pick you up when you’re having a bad day, someone who will not just invite you to the game, but pull you off the sidelines to play along.
The Friendship Pillar of Best Buddies ranges from elementary school through adulthood. Everyone, no matter how old, deserves to have someone who will pull them off the sidelines every time, through big life moments and small ones. Send us an email at NewHampshire@bestbuddies.org to get involved.