Boogie's Buddy Race- Now VIRTUAL!

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Boogie's Buddy Race- Now VIRTUAL!

What started as a small, grassroots effort in 1973 to match adults with kids in mentoring relationships, has become one of the largest youth serving organizations in the Roaring Fork Valley. In 1973, a therapist at the community mental health center recognized that many of his clients were single mothers. Having been a Big Brother in college, he started providing mentors for boys and girls in the community. In 1991 the Buddy Program was incorporated as a 501(c )3 and in 1994 the organization expanded to include the communities of Basalt and El Jebel. In 2005 the organization started School-based Programming with adult volunteers and the Peer-to-Peer Program involving high school volunteers as mentors. In 2010 we incorporated our outdoor, experiential, group mentoring programs known as the LEAD (Leadership through Exploration Action and Discovery) Program. Also, in 2010 the Buddy Program started serving youth in Carbondale and in 2015 we moved our mid-valley office from Basalt to Carbondale to establish a more defined presence in that community. A grant from Great Outdoors Colorado Generation Wild fund in 2018 led to the establishment of our LEAD Outdoor Leadership Class at Rifle High and Middle Schools in the fall of 2018. This is a three year grant.

Over the years the organization has expanded to add to the mentoring experiences we provide youth. Today we offer professional case management, free activities for Buddy Pairs throughout the year, extracurricular activity scholarships for youth, therapeutic counseling and other services. Program evaluations demonstrate that the Buddy Program has helped our Little Buddies in areas of self-esteem, decision making, academics and relationships with friends and family. The Buddy Program worked with 547 youth and their families in 2018 and an additional 147 adult volunteer Big Buddies. The Buddy Program is a registered 501 (c)(3) not-for-profit organization.

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