Best Buddies

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e-Buddies of the Moment

Each e-Beat, we profile one of our many fantastic e-Buddies pairs! If you would like for your match to be profiled, please contact us!

This e-Beat we are featuring Tarina and Nicole!

The e-Buddies program is described as an e-mail pen pal program, but unlike traditional pen pals that write long letters that can take weeks to get to each other, online, e-Buddies experience immediate gratification when an e-mail is sent or received. As society continues to move away from long written letters to short, fast e-mails, several of our e-Buddies have changed the pace of their friendships as well.

Tarina and Nicole have been matched in the e-Buddies program for almost 7 years and have sent over 7,500 e-mails. With more than 1,000 e-mails between them a year, the two have grown close. Tarina says that they have a lot in common and they like to talk about their families. Nicole explains, "It is neat that we have been able to remain in touch for so long and still find so many things to chat about without having ever met." No matter how short or simple the e-mail, she is always happy "to see [Tarina's] name pop up in [her] inbox."

In the beginning of their friendship, Tarina and Nicole wrote longer e-mails to get to know each other. As their friendship progressed they were happy to e-mail shorter updates or just ask "How's it going?" to their e-Buddy. It doesn't take long to write these e-mails, but the quick pace of their friendship allows for them to feel closer to each other even though they live on opposite sides of the country.

While Tarina sends e-mails to Nicole daily, she doesn't just use the Internet for e-mail. She enjoys playing online games and talking to other people online. Computers and the Internet have become a great social and entertaining environment for her inside her home. Often, for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities that are no longer in school, the amount of social activities outside the home are limited. Through the Internet and e-Buddies, Tarina is able to keep in touch with family and friends as well as have fun.

There are many other friendships in e-Buddies like Tarina and Nicole's and more are forming each day that would not have been possible with this program. At its simplest, according to Nicole, e-Buddies is great for being able to "vent about a bad day, or celebrate a success" with a friend.


If you know someone who you would like to nominate for e-Buddies of the moment, please click here to contact us!

Letter from the Director | Ask Emerson | Best Buddies Spotlight
Conversation Starters | e-Buddies of the Moment | The State of e-Buddies |Update from the Field | The e-Beat Archive