Another quick post for the day- but this one is on Best Buddies. Though writing is not my claim to fame, I volunteered to talk about an awesome opportunity we have had the past two days. Prior to our trip, we received news that the schools were interested in hearing about a club called Best Buddies. Best Buddies is a club in many American and some international schools that promotes inclusion of individuals with special needs. Individuals without special needs are paired with those with special needs. From there, friendships blossom and irreplaceable bonds are formed. I have had the privilege of being in this club for three years and it holds a very special place in my heart. Here in Nicaragua, students and teachers were interested in hearing about the program with hopes of starting it in their schools.
The past two days, we presented a PowerPoint, a skit, and two videos with many students. At Rey Solomon, we set up in the heat of the afternoon. Soon after, about 90 students poured into the tiny room. They sat in desks and chairs that were crammed together as we stood at the front of the room equipped with a few very talented translators. Kat, Corinne, Kenzie, and I performed a brief skit to introduce the basics of the club. Francois communicated (very eloquently) with the students through the translator. His gratitude regarding what the program has done for his son, Alec, was very apparent and moving. Today, we presented at the other school in a much larger and cooler space, the church. Both presentations went very well and it was very obvious that God was using us because of the connections Francois, Kenzie, and I have with Best Buddies back home. It was such a blessing to see that both schools have already started to develop the program. Ensuring that everyone, even those with disabilities, is included inside and outside of the school is a topic that we all hold near to our hearts. We continue to pray for the development and effectiveness for the program as students befriend their peers with special needs!