Event promotes friendship for those with, without disabilities

Posted at 4:58 PM, May 17, 2014
and last updated 2014-05-17 18:58:00-04

SALT LAKE CITY – Utahns participated in a walk Saturday that raises funds and awareness for a mentoring program that helps people with and without intellectual and developmental disabilities.

The Best Buddies Friendship Walk was held at Veteran’s Memorial Park, and the event benefits Best Buddies, which is an organization that creates opportunities for one on one friendships for people with and without intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Jamie Riccobono, state director for Best Buddies Utah, said they work toward inclusion.

“Individuals with disabilities often struggle with some of the basic socialization needs, such as friendship, a sense of belonging, and they’re critical to a person’s self-worth, and really Best Buddies gives that to participants, to people with disabilities and without–we find so many friendships,” she said.

Brett Banford said he is grateful for those efforts toward greater inclusion.

“The best thing about Best Buddies is having friends, and just hang out and be treated like, we are really just the same as everyone else,” Banford said.

Click here for more details about the walk.