LOUISVILLE, KY (February 17, 2014)— Best Buddies Kentucky has built their organization on four core foundations – establishing a statewide movement, creating one-on-one friendships, providing integrated employment opportunities and crafting leaders for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. ResCare’s Associate General Counsel and Privacy Officer Deena Ombres has been named a candidate for Best Buddies Kentucky 2013 Champion of the Year fundraising competition for supporting all four.
Champion of the Year is an annual eight-week fundraising competition organized by Best Buddies Kentucky featuring prominent candidates from the Louisville Metro community. This year, ten individuals were selected, including Ms. Ombres. In order to be named Champion of the Year, each candidate must have actively spread the word about the organization, gotten the community involved and raised the most funds among their peers.
This year’s Champion was Brian Coxon of Waddell & Reed, raising $8,600. Although Ms. Ombres did not receive the title of Champion of the Year, she raised $1,500 for the organization, and she felt that she had already won by supporting a great cause and uniting two companies with similar missions.
“Having worked for ResCare for 10 years, I have seen how some members of society treat individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities differently or even as less than,” Ms. Ombres said. “Best Buddies Kentucky’s message and mission of inclusion and friendship is inspiring and gives me hope that we will stop stereotyping and treat everyone with the respect they deserve.”
Over the course of the eight weeks, six events were held, ranging from themed dinner parties and bowling tournaments to cornhole tournaments and vendor fairs. Candidates reached out to their friends, families, co-workers and community members to share the mission of Best Buddies and ask for their support.
Ms. Ombres serves on the Board of Directors for Best Buddies Kentucky and works closely with their state director, Chris Head. Mr. Head felt that awareness is the key to achieving their mission at Best Buddies and recognized Ms. Ombres for her help.
“We are always excited to partner with like-minded organizations in our community such as ResCare,” Mr. Head said. “The one thing that really helps drive movement and reap awareness is when people pull in the same direction and turn objectives into realities. We are extremely thankful for the relationships we have created, and individuals like Deena are a huge benefit to us. It’s important to work with those whose hearts are in the right place.”
Best Buddies Kentucky began in the fall of 2009 and has expanded their reach since then with eleven college programs, five high school programs and two middle school programs that support over 1,100 individuals in Kentucky. For more information about Best Buddies and to find an organization near you, please visit BestBuddies.org.
Author: Moriah Dietrich