Best Buddies holds annual Mixer/Matcher Party


Laila Marcum (11, HSU) hugs Isabella Robinson (9, ECE) before the meeting begins. Photo by Marilyn Buente.

Guest Writer

This post was submitted by Marilyn Buente (11, VA).

Best Buddies held their annual Mixer/Match Party, an event dedicated to playing games, enjoying treats and members getting to know each other on Sept. 18.

Best Buddies is an international organization with the mission of building friendships between special needs students and the rest of the student population.

The organization works to end the social and physical isolation of people with intellectual and physical disabilities (IDD).

In the past, the Mixer/Match Party’s main objective was to pair up buddies, however, this year the sponsors decided to do things differently. 

“So usually, during our September mixer we do our matches where we reveal our pairs,” said Ms. Merrit Robinson (Social Studies), the Best Buddies’ sponsor, “But this year we’re doing it differently; we’re putting that off till October. This mixer is just a big get-to-know-you event, and we have lots of different games planned.”

“We decided to push back the pairings to October because we wanted to make sure our buddies clicked,” said Aafreen Shaik (12, MST), Manual’s Best Buddies president.

This year, the Mixer/Match party plans on giving members an opportunity to get to know each other with food and games. 

As the party began, students almost forgot to sign in—distracted by their excitement for the upcoming event—while last year’s buddies reunited with hugs and laughter.

The event began with pizza, cookies and drinks, and the club’s president began the first game, “Would You Rather.” 

“Best Buddies, in one word, is ‘crazy,’” Best Buddies member Isabella Mchugh (10, ECE) said, “We make lots of jokes and have fun.”

Although buddies are paired up next month, Best Buddies allows members to join all year.

To get involved, Robinson urges Manual students to follow the mission of the club in their daily lives and promote involvement in the club.

Isabella Robinson (9, ECE) eats pizza with other club members. Photo by Marilyn Buente.

“When you see our special needs students around the building, know their names, say hi to them, maybe invite the lunch with you. Treat our special needs students just like you would any other student in the school,” said Robinson.

For more information on Best Buddies, check out their website.