"Founded in 1989 by Anthony Kennedy Shriver, Best Buddies is a vibrant, international organization that has grown from one original chapter to almost 1,500 middle school, high school, and college chapters worldwide. Best Buddies programs engage participants in each of the 50 United States, and in 50 countries around the world. Best Buddies’ seven formal programs – Best Buddies Middle Schools, High Schools, Colleges, Citizens, e-Buddies, Jobs and Ambassadors – positively impact nearly 700,000 individuals with and without disabilities worldwide. Best Buddies volunteers annually contribute, at no cost to their communities, support services that equate to more than US$164 million. As a result of their involvement with Best Buddies, people with IDD secure rewarding jobs, live on their own, become inspirational leaders, and make lifelong friendships. Although Best Buddies has advanced tremendously in its short existence, many areas of the country and many regions of the world still lack programs to help people with IDD become part of mainstream society. With that in mind, Best Buddies is systematically implementing its 2020 Initiative, which will witness the organization’s continued significant growth, both domestically and overseas. When you make a contribution to Best Buddies, not only are you providing people with IDD the opportunity to be integrated into the community and reach their full potential and achieve their dreams, you are also permitting people who are not disabled understand the value of people with IDD. Many of our participants in our middle school, high school and college programs will become leaders in the private sector and will hold decision making roles that will shape the future of our communities. Join us now in launching the next chapter of Best Buddies – we need our supporters to continue leading the way to create a more inclusive society. We are ready to continue making a difference, we are advocates for change, and most of all, we are BEST BUDDIES!"