Club spotlight –
‘Best Buddies’ brings opportunities
for 1-on-1 friendships

Blakely+Spears%2C+Jacob+Tejada%2C+Shannon+Kuria+and+Emily+Whitmire+take+time+together+in+the+photo+booth+at+the+%22Best+Buddies+Match+Party%22+in+October.+One+of+the+newest+organizations+at+the+school+is+Best+Buddies%2C+which+is+a+group+focused+on+creating+friendships+for+students+with+disabilities.+The+group+is+open+to+all+high+school+students.%0A%22I+hope+students+come+with+an+open+heart+and+an+open+mind%2C%22+Gomez+said.+%22Be+willing+to+take+the+time+to+form+friendships.%22
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Club spotlight –
‘Best Buddies’ brings opportunities
for 1-on-1 friendships

Blakely Spears, Jacob Tejada, Shannon Kuria and Emily Whitmire take time together in the photo booth at the

Blakely Spears, Jacob Tejada, Shannon Kuria and Emily Whitmire take time together in the photo booth at the "Best Buddies Match Party" in October. One of the newest organizations at the school is Best Buddies, which is a group focused on creating friendships for students with disabilities. The group is open to all high school students. "I hope students come with an open heart and an open mind," Gomez said. "Be willing to take the time to form friendships."

Leah Gomez

Blakely Spears, Jacob Tejada, Shannon Kuria and Emily Whitmire take time together in the photo booth at the "Best Buddies Match Party" in October. One of the newest organizations at the school is Best Buddies, which is a group focused on creating friendships for students with disabilities. The group is open to all high school students. "I hope students come with an open heart and an open mind," Gomez said. "Be willing to take the time to form friendships."

Leah Gomez

Leah Gomez

Blakely Spears, Jacob Tejada, Shannon Kuria and Emily Whitmire take time together in the photo booth at the "Best Buddies Match Party" in October. One of the newest organizations at the school is Best Buddies, which is a group focused on creating friendships for students with disabilities. The group is open to all high school students. "I hope students come with an open heart and an open mind," Gomez said. "Be willing to take the time to form friendships."

Nicole Miguez, Reporter

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One of the newest organizations at the school is Best Buddies, which is a club focused on creating friendships for students with disabilities. It’s a nonprofit organization with a global volunteer movement for one-on-one friendships.

“Joining our club gives students an opportunity to get to know students with disabilities,” special ed faculty adviser Leah Gomez said. “It shows that they aren’t that different from you and I.”

Relationships target end to isolation

Best Buddies is dedicated to ending the isolation of the 200 million people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. According to Gomez, the program not only helps individuals with disabilities form friendships with other students, but it helps them secure jobs, improve communication skills and more.

“If you are interested in joining, you will start as an associate member,” Prosper’s Best Buddies vice president Hailey Rayburn said. “An associate member is someone who gets to go to the events. They just don’t have a one-on-one relationship.”

Group begins 1st year for local chapter

This is the first year of a local Best Buddies group, but the organization was created in 1989, making it around 29 years old.

“I have worked with the special education kids for about a year now,” Rayburn said, “I have been with the (local) club since Day 1.”

According to the website Best Buddies.org, the group impacts individuals of all ages, all over the country and even worldwide. Students interested in Best Buddies can become members anytime they’d like.

Student director Shannon Kuria said the reason is simple for people to join and to get to know the group’s members: “to help them.”

The group is open to all high school students.

“I hope students come with an open heart and an open mind,” Gomez said. “Be willing to take the time to form friendships.”

For more information on how to be involved in the Best Buddies program, students can contact Gomez at her  email address: lrgomez@prosper-isd.net