Best Buddies Prom 2019
On Friday, March 15th, 2019, students at Pembroke High School welcomed communities from around the state for the annual Best Buddies Prom. which included 150 participants.
The Best Buddies organization, which operates in 53 countries around the world, was founded in 1987 in hopes of creating friendship and opportunity for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Through the One-to-One Friendship program, students in middle schools, high schools, and colleges across the country are partnered with their developmentally-challenged peers to act as mentors, build confidence and give everyone the chance to feel included.
Pembroke's Best Buddies chapter is well known and has been largely successful due to the students who participate in the program. Pamela Parrella, the teacher who supervises Pembroke’s chapter, says the club has become part of the school’s culture since it was formed in 2004. More than just the one-on-one friendships, she said it gives special needs students a larger sense of belonging.
Pembroke High School Senior Derek Lambiase was an instrumental part in organizing this year's prom and rallied the support of the entire community for this great cause. A group of parents volunteered to supply the food, and what began as a pizza and chips, turned into a full-scale buffet that would rival some weddings, with desserts from the famous Konditor Meister Bakery.
Teachers, Paraprofessionals, and Administrators all volunteered to chaperone and many community members volunteered their services as well. Professional photographers, hair and make-up artists all donated their services to make this event extra special for the students.
Pembroke High School art students created custom decor for the "Under the Sea" theme, while many community volunteers and students from the National Honor Society, Student Council, and Senior Class Officers are all worked together to organize the set-up, decor, service, and break-down of the event.
Pembroke was joined by Best Buddies Chapters from Dighton-Rehoboth, Foxboro, Plymouth- North, Hingham, Norton, Oliver Ames, Milton, and Middleboro as well as representatives from Best Buddies International.
Thank you to everyone who made this event a truly special evening.