Here at Albion College, it’s not uncommon to attend unusual fundraising events – synchronized swimming competitions, paying to throw a pie at your friends’ faces or smashing cars with sledgehammers certainly come to mind. This past Wednesday afternoon, Albion College’s Best Buddies held a fundraising event that offered students the opportunity to play with dogs on the quad.
Best Buddies is a group of Albion student volunteers that work with groups of mentally challenged adults in the community. Their event, called Pet a Pooch, offered options for students to purchase baked goods or pay to spend 10 minutes to play with one of the dogs that were brought in from local shelters.
The event received lots of traffic from students on their way to and from class. Amanda Allen, Commerce first-year, attended Pet a Pooch and enjoyed spending time with the dogs before getting back to her studies.
“It was worth being late to class to play with some puppies,” Allen said.
At the end of the day, Best Buddies raised $225 for their organization. Allie Washabaugh, Bay City junior and president of Best Buddies, was happy the event turned out to be such a success.
“Our goal for this event was to have some more money to take [the buddies] on some trips off campus,” Washabaugh said.
Currently, the Best Buddies student volunteers get together with the buddies for events like bowling, Easter egg hunts or dinners. Some members get more involved with the program and meet with a Best Buddies adult on their own time.
“We have members that are paired up one-on-one with them and spend time with them on a monthly basis and talk to them every week,” Washabaugh said.
Volunteer Paige Ankney, Sylvania, Ohio junior, is very passionate about her work with Best Buddies.
“I love being a part of Best Buddies for many reasons,” Ankey said. “You really begin building a relationship with each of the buddies. My buddy, Mike, is such an amazing man. I’d like to think I’ve made a difference in the buddies’ life, but more importantly, being a part of this organization has made a huge difference in mine.”
Photo by Alex Carey