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A Best Buddies Story: Joshua Felder

Meet Josh Felder, an enthusiastic Advanced Ambassador for Best Buddies. Follow Josh on social media and you'll no doubt hear him say: “We’re in it to win it with inclusion.”

 
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We caught up with Josh to find out what this motto means to him personally, what memorable activities he's been able to get involved with through his position with Best Buddies and how he sees his career developing in the future. 

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MTEAM: Tell us a little bit about yourself!
JOSHUA FELDER: 
My name is Joshua Felder and I am an Advanced Ambassador for Best Buddies of Tamp, FL. I enjoy sports and public speaking. I am a natural athlete (I was a member of the high school track team and swim team) and an excellent hip-hop dancer. I also danced on stage with the Back-Pack Kid, at our recent Friendship Walk.

Joshua Felder Interview - Best Buddies Ambassador

MTEAM: When and how did you become an ambassador for Best Buddies?
JF: 
During my senior year in high school, I informed the high school Best Buddies Faculty Advisor that I wanted to become an Ambassador. The Faculty Advisor signed me up online and I later began attending Ambassador trainings to enhance my public speaking and leadership skills. 

Joshua Felder Interview - Best Buddies Ambassador

MTEAM: What are some of the coolest things you get to do as an ambassador for Best Buddies?
JF: 
Some of the coolest things I’ve done are co-hosting the Best Buddies Friendship Walk, promoting Best Buddies on local radio stations, and giving speeches at Best Buddies events.

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MTEAM: What do you love most about the Best Buddies? How have they helped to support you?
JF: 
What I love most about Best Buddies is the fact that they provide opportunities for lasting friendships and leadership development. I now have lots of friends and numerous opportunities to speak at Best Buddies events.

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MTEAM: How do you see Best Buddies playing a role in your future? Do you have a career path you’d love to follow in mind? 
JF: 
I’m hopeful that in the near future, I will have a paid position with Best Buddies. I’d like to have a public speaking career with Best Buddies.

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MTEAM: How would you explain Best Buddies to someone who has never heard of the organization before?
JF: 
Best Buddies is a worldwide organization that helps individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities find one-to-one friendships, employment, and develop leadership skills. This nonprofit organization was founded in Georgetown in 1989, by Anthony K. Shriver.

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MTEAM: Have you met anyone through Best Buddies who really inspires you? Who and how so?
JF: 
Tampa, FL Global Ambassador, Kellie Howard, is a great inspiration for me. She gives me advice on leadership skills, encourages and supports me at Best Buddies events, and we have developed a lasting friendship.

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MTEAM: You always say, “We’re in it to win it inclusion.” What does this mean to you personally?
JF: 
It means that persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) should be treated equally and included. We deserve the right to be heard, we deserve the right to have jobs, we deserve the right to contribute to our community and become leaders in our community.

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MTEAM: Do you have a favorite memory from your time with Best Buddies?
JF: 
My favorite memory is from April 2018 when I co-hosted the Friendship Walk and danced on stage with the Back-Pack Kid.

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MTEAM: What would you say to someone who was considering about supporting Best Buddies or joining a Best Buddies Challenge community like the MTeam, but not sure whether to go ahead?
JF: 
Please join me and the whole world to support Best Buddies so that people with IDD. can be moved to a new acceptance in their families and community. Your contribution and team efforts will make a positive impact in the lives of people with IDD. 

Candyce Carragher