Best Buddies to participate in Salvation Army Bell Ringing
By: Reese Hamm
Best Buddies kicked off the holiday season by holding a Salvation Army Bell Ringing outside Safran’s Supermarket on Saturday, December 20.
The Best Buddies organization is a non-profit where people with intellectual and developmental disabilities are paired with students who are willing to build a close friendship. Best Buddies has been a club at the high school for 5 years, and it hosts and attends a variety of events throughout the year. This includes the bell ringing, which has happened consistently in the past few years.
“Best buddies is always finding new ways to get our members out in the community and for them to make a difference!” stated Kelsey McGaughey, the president of the QVHS chapter.
The bell ringing will raise money for local services that the Salvation Army supports. The buddies get to participate in a variety of activities in the club, but this one is special.
Jake McMullan, vice president of the high school chapter, stated that this allows the buddies to take part in uncommon activities and deal with real situations. He said this really makes an impact on their lives.
The Salvation Army bell ringing is only one of the examples of the club helping to support the community. Recently, the club participated in Stuff-a-Bus and they volunteer regularly at World Vision.
“I think it’s always important for our club to volunteer in the community to spread the awareness of our club and potentially have more people interested in what we do, which could lead them to also spread inclusion and make the difference Best Buddies strives to make,” stated McGaughey.
This is one of the different activities that the club participates in each year, this activity especially poses a challenge because it includes standing outside in the cold for two hours. For the club though, it is important to get out of your comfort zone.
“For the buddies who don't socialize, moving outside of the school setting creates new learning experiences. I think this is crucial for everyone to learn how to be friends, access the community, and to be happy,” stated Jason Brindza, the special education advisor. “We have such a wonderful community and city to explore, surely this makes it easier to find things to do!”
The bell ringing for the Salvation Army was a volunteer activity. The Best Buddies chapter at the high school wants to help as many people as they can.
“I hope by providing these opportunities, the students in the club will share in this belief. Best Buddies is about friendship. We can share in our kind efforts.”