Best Buddies, UW
Best Buddies was founded in the United States in 1993 and has expanded worldwide. As a participating school, the University of Waterloo Best Buddies Chapter's goal is to make our community more inclusive and accepting of people with intellectual disabilities.
The club consists of peer buddies and associate members. Peer buddies are students paired in a one-to-one friendship with a person who has an intellectual disability (called buddies). Buddies are adults from the community with intellectual disabilities. Matches are made for at least one academic year. Associate members are students who are part of the chapter but who are not paired in one-to-one friendships. Associate members can play support roles and help plan events. They can also participate in group events.
Each year, the chapter starts off by having an information session to assign interview times due to the limited buddies available. Once the club members have been decided, police check forms (sheets are provided by the chapter) are required in order for peer buddies to go on one-on-one outings together. the chapter plans monthly events for all members to attend with their buddies. Some events include bowling, Waterloo's Wonders of Winter Lights Festival, and movie night. Any suggestions are welcomed!