The annual event benefits Best Buddies Maryland, a nonprofit that creates one-to-one friendships, leadership opportunities and integrated employment for children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
“It’s an honor to be part of this event,” said Durkin, who served as the honorary chairman for the third straight year. “Please spread the good word about Best Buddies as this is one of my favorite days of the year. I appreciate our players supporting the event and being out really early this morning to set up. What a great turnout – it’s the best one we’ve had. Thank you again for joining us.”
The Friendship Walk began at the XFINITY Center and consisted of a two-mile walk around the campus mall and back to the XFINITY Center. Following the walk, food was provided and the annual Friendship Games were held inside the XFINITY Center Pavilion.
Durkin, Turgeon, their families and members of the Terps football team were on hand to volunteer, take pictures and greet participants during the walk. Participants also enjoyed photo booths, face painting stations and many more family friendly actives outside of the Pavilion.
“It’s an honor to be a part of this organization,” said Turgeon. “I remember when we were here five years ago and we could only fill the steps - so this turnout and your support is unbelievable. My family is here today and my son, Will, started a Best Buddies chapter at his high school last year. Have fun with this walk and enjoy the day.”
The partnership between Best Buddies Maryland and the Maryland Athletics Department has helped raise nearly 1.4 million dollars in the last nine years and seen more than 6,000 walkers take part. Best Buddies is striving to raise $260,000 during the event this year.
“I can’t thank Coach Durkin enough for his dedication and those of his players which make our event special for those we serve over the years,” said Vince Fiduccia, Best Buddies State Director. “We are also delighted to welcome Coach Turgeon to the event.”
About Best Buddies: Best Buddies Maryland is a nonprofit whose mission it is to establish a global volunteer movement that creates opportunities for one-to-one friendships, integrated employment and leadership development for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. In Maryland, Best Buddies serves 5,500 citizens with and without disabilities and impacts 55,000 citizens through eight signature programs. Best Buddies is in 104 colleges, middle and high schools throughout Maryland. Best Buddies Maryland began supported employment programs in 2015 and has placement throughout central Maryland that will put people with intellectual and developmental disabilities to work.