In March of 1994, Best Buddies Jobs was created by Anthony Kennedy Shriver in response to the employment needs of people with IDD. Funding was initially secured through the Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. Foundation and the Florida Developmental Disabilities Council, to whom Best Buddies is indebted.
Efforts for expansion of Best Buddies Jobs to the Los Angeles area became possible with a grant awarded from the California State Council on Developmental Disabilities in November, 1996. After the grant period, Best Buddies Jobs California began to receive funding from the Department of Rehabilitation, and Los Angeles area Regional Centers. This funding has allowed the program to branch out and provide services to additional cities in Los Angeles County.
In 1998, Best Buddies Jobs started in Boston, MA and receives funding for services from the Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services. In 2012, the Best Buddies Jobs program opened in Falls Church, VA and there are plans to expand to many other states over time.
Best Buddies Jobs serves individuals that have a primary diagnosis of IDD across the country. This program utilizes the individual-competitive model of supported employment, and is committed to providing quality, person-centered services that maximize the individual’s choices and integration into the community.