The BFF Project is now a monthly event! Meetings are the first Wednesday EVENING of each month, from 6:45-8 PM.
Are you looking for a place to meet people, have fun, and make friends?
If you are 18 or older, this unique program from Parents Helping Parents may be an opportunity for you!
The BFF Project is an adult, friendship and social network building group for individuals 18+ with developmental disabilities (like autism and Down syndrome) and other medical conditions (like anxiety and depression). The BFF Project gives participants an opportunity to increase their social relationships and friendships in a relaxed, person-centered, and non-stressful manner.
All BFF Project events are currently held on Zoom.
Many individuals with developmental disabilities and other medical conditions find it challenging to establish meaningful friendships and companionship with their peers. They watch TV alone, eat alone, and go to bed alone. They are there with their family, or group/house-mates, with little in common. They have no one to chat with on the phone and no one to call their BFF.
The BFF Project strives to change that sense of isolation! The BFF Project events are a place for participants to connect with others who are like them, who share similar interests, and who may have similar dreams and goals.
The BFF Project is all about what an individual likes and enjoyment! We work hard to provide the tools and support necessary to help participants identify like-minded friends in a comfortable, no-pressure manner. There is no pressure to participate until someone is ready. Some who have attended The BFF Project events are quiet and observant during their first meeting, then at their second or third meeting, they blossom into social butterflies!
Expect a warm welcome from your first log-in! We start with quick introductions and a question of the day to break the ice. Afterwards there are breakout rooms to choose from. Each breakout room has a different theme which are participant-chosen topics (like Disney characters, cooking, painting, dating, and more) and lasts about 30 minutes. The BFF Project events end with a group goodbye!
During The BFF Project events, dedicated volunteers are present to support participants and to facilitate interaction with the group. Parents and supporters are welcome to join participants at events but do not actively participate. If your participant is only able to be at ease with you at their side, we welcome you to join as well! Otherwise, we ask supporters to remain nearby and be available during the event.
The majority of individuals attending The BFF Project events need no support to participate. Participants are ready to meet others who share their interests. Participants are also encouraged to share items that interest them with the group. This may help increase a participant’s comfort level, thereby fostering more personal interaction with other participants.
If you think The BFF Project is a good match for you, or your loved one with social anxiety, a developmental disability, or other medical condition, all you need to do is register on Zoom. Choose the date(s) you want to attend! You’ll get a unique log-in that is meant JUST FOR YOU. If you have questions or need help, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
We take mental health issues seriously at Parents Helping Parents. The BFF Project is a social group and should not be considered therapy, mental health counseling, or intervention, or to be used as a means to receive professional support. If mental health support is needed, we recommend NAMI of Santa Clara County or the county in which you live. https://namisantaclara.org/. The PHP Resource Directory includes a listing of mental health professionals that may be helpful for you.
VOLUNTEERS are needed to help at our online events and also for event preparation!
We would love to meet you and discuss how you can get involved as a volunteer! Online meetings take preparation for activities and the meetings are richer with socially-focused adults to facilitate breakout sessions during the event. Training is available. For more information about volunteer opportunities, contact email@example.com.