Why not help those in need?

Suffolk University’s chapter of Best Buddies is hosting a Friendship Festival this Sunday, September 30. The goal of the event is to raise awareness and recruit new members to the organization. Best Buddies is a non-profit group that provides opportunities for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities to cultivate one-on-one friendships.

“Individuals who can’t make friends on their own gain relationships with positive people,” said Suffolk chapter President Haley Ford. “Suffolk as a whole is really rooted into community service. It’s a small commitment, seven hours a month, to have a good impact on these people.”

The Suffolk chapter is hoping that new students will get involved. While they welcome anyone who is interested, sophomores and juniors are urged to join. Since they are creating friendships, they want to make sure the relationships can last. President Ford reflected on her experiences to inspire interested students.

“I have been with Best Buddies for about nine years,” Ford said. “I was looking for an activity I would benefit from that would not just benefit me. They don’t care about the small things; they are just looking for you to speak with them. They make you realize the small things we take advantage of.”

Currently, the organization is made up of 22 Suffolk students and 20 buddies. They are looking to expand the program and possibly double the chapter. In the past, the organization has been comprised of mostly females. They are looking for male students to get involved.

“You are spending your time valuably,” added Ford. “The benefit you receive is unexpected.  As a person, you feel something as a whole for the society and the community.”

Best Buddies hosts monthly events, each with a unique theme. This Sunday’s event will feature a carnival theme and will run from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.