The Student News Site of Alexandria City High School

Theogony

The Student News Site of Alexandria City High School

Theogony

The Student News Site of Alexandria City High School

Theogony

A 5k for Friendship

The+Friendship+Walk+took+place+on+October+20+on+the+National+Mall.
The Friendship Walk took place on October 20 on the National Mall.

Fun, Dancing and New Friendships at the annual Best Buddies Friendship Walk.

Caroline Surratt

On October 20, the annual Best Buddies Friendship Walk was a huge success. The National Mall was packed with students and adults ready to have a fun 5k walk and to promote the inclusive message of Best Buddies.

Many high schools represented their schools’ chapter of Best Buddies and T.C. Williams was no exception. T.C. has a chapter of the international organization led by the chapter president Chloe Marsh with almost 90 members. Marsh believed the walk was a success this year. She said, “The walk was a great introduction for Best Buddies in the school year because when you go you get to meet people from all over the region that are all interested in the same things as you because they are all working towards inclusion.”

Seniors Anna Jane Guynn, Chloe Marsh, Emma Franken, and Jasselene Paz at the Friendship Walk.

Best Buddies is a non-profit organization dedicated to creating one on one friendships for people with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IDD). It creates opportunities for integrated workplaces as well as leadership development for those with IDD. Members have the option to be peer buddies or to be associate members. Peer buddies are matched with a buddy for a one on one friendship. Associate members are not matched with a buddy but they attend the meetings and all of the fun activities that the club participates in.

The friendship walk takes place annually to spread awareness to end the social, economic and political isolation of people with IDD, and to promote new friendships among people with and without IDD. 30 minutes before the walk everyone warmed up with some energetic dance moves and dynamic exercises. The 5k walk began at 10:00 as participants moved under a purple and white balloon arch that signified the start of the race as they danced to the pounding lively music.

The walk went around the National Mall with mile markers instructing participants to take selfies of the new friends they met. Participants were also given teal shirts with #inclusion on the front. When everyone finished the race there was pizza and drinks. A face paint station created lots of smiles as groups got matching face paint. The highlight for many was the dance party where both buddies and peer buddies hit the dance floor. The energy level was high as new friends danced together not only promoting but showing the inclusive message of Best Buddies.

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A 5k for Friendship