Home Community Friendship Circle rolls into the New Year!

Friendship Circle rolls into the New Year!

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(From left) Board member Adele Karp with her husband, David; Board President Helen Griffin and Board member Rabbi Yossel Kranz at the registration table area.

By Tanya Buresh-Werby, Assistant Director

Friendship Circle of Virginia, the heartwarming non-profit organization committed to nurturing bonds of friendship and promoting inclusivity for individuals with disabilities and community teen friends, kicked off its highly anticipated 2023-2024 program year with a spectacular event on Sunday, Sept. 10th, hosted at Bowlero.

A FCVA_group of families and friends.

This joyous program year launch was a truly unforgettable occasion that united the vibrant Friendship Circle community to celebrate September birthdays, extend warm greetings to new families, and introduce our dedicated teen friends.

With an impressive turnout of 135 attendees, including 45 spirited teen friends, 79 cherished families, and numerous devoted volunteers, the event was an overwhelming success.

At the heart of this event lay the core principle of Friendship Circle: no one walks alone. Every individual present, whether a familiar face or a newcomer, found companionship and camaraderie.

An inspiring mix of teens from diverse public middle and high schools, as well as the Shaarei Torah High School students, joined the ranks of our teen friends, eager to explore the magic of Friendship Circle.

 

Afsheen with teen friend Jenna.

One of the standout moments of the evening was the heartwarming celebration of September birthdays. Friendship Circle of Virginia takes immense pride in embracing and applauding the unique qualities of each individual, and this sentiment extended to ensuring that those with birthdays in September felt truly special.

As cupcakes graced our tables, voices joined together in the timeless chorus of “Happy Birthday,” showering love and appreciation upon those celebrating their milestone. The warmth of the occasion left everyone feeling cherished and valued.

The program year launch was also a time of open arms and warm welcomes to new families and teen friends entering the Friendship Circle fold. Our organization thrives on being an inclusive and embracing space for all. This event provided a perfect avenue for newcomers to connect with established members, volunteers, and staff, forging an immediate sense of belonging that will continue to grow.

The program year launch at Bowlero wasn’t just a day filled with fun; it was a resounding celebration of friendship, inclusivity, and the deep sense of community that defines Friendship Circle of Virginia.

As the program year unfolds, the bonds formed at this extraordinary event will serve as the bedrock for future activities and endeavors.

One parent of a child with disabilities shared their experience, saying, “Thank you SO much for the bowling event. We had an absolutely fantastic time! Our family was so uplifted and supported seeing our kids out there having fun in a group setting. They talked about the bowling and arcade for hours afterwards and kept saying what a good time they had.  This event was a highlight for our family. Thank you again for hosting this fun event!”

Upcoming events on Friendship Circle’s calendar include Adaptive Horseback Riding on Sunday, Oct. 15; Kindness Garden on Sunday, Nov. 5; Walk N Roll on Sunday, Nov. 19; Chanukah on Ice on Sunday, Dec. 10; and Adaptive Rock Climbing on Sunday, Dec. 17. To discover more about these events or to register, please visit friendshipcircleva.org/events.

If you’re curious about how you can contribute to Friendship Circle of Virginia’s mission or get involved, don’t hesitate to explore our website at FCVA.org or contact us at (804) 740-2000 ext. 4.

Together, we can continue to build a more inclusive community, one friendship at a time.