According to a study by Easterseals, nearly 69% of adults with disabilities still live with their parents and only 11% of them have full-time employment. Best Buddies International was founded in 1989 to help address the inequities faced by people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Best Buddies supports people with disabilities through one-to-one friendships, competitive employment opportunities, leadership development, and inclusive living.
Many young adults with disabilities do not have the chance to participate in the typical “college’ experience of living in the dorms, having a roommate, being on a college campus or gaining independent living skills. Best Buddies Living provides these opportunities in a safe and supportive environment. Each resident with a disability has a specialized support plan curated for their specific needs. Areas of focus include independent living skills, personal finance, social relationships, vocational skills, personal hygiene, mental health, etc. It is through this supported living environment that participants gain essential skills needed for an independent future.
Washington, D.C. is currently home to the first-of-its-kind: the Best Buddies Living program. Located in the Union Market area and partnered with Catholic University, Best Buddies Living creates a dynamic, family-oriented environment where people with and without disabilities can live, grow, and thrive together. Residents in this program enjoy weekly group meals, monthly events centered around the vibrant D.C. area, and a meaningful sense of community.