Good Day Grad is a 'Best Buddy' - FOX 13 News

Good Day Grad is a 'Best Buddy'

Updated: 13 Mar 2012, 11:20 AM EDT
TAMPA (FOX 13) -

She's one of the sweetest Good Day Grads we've met so far and her heart is as big as the cause she fights for every day.

With her winning smile and charismatic way of looking at the world, Davee Thompson is the kind of girl you want to be friends with, and she makes it her mission to be the best friend she can be at Plant High School.

Davee is the president of a program called, "Best Buddies." It pairs special needs teens with other teens at their high school, so they can be best buds to each other.

When you talk to the savvy 18-year-old, she hits all the buzz words: integration in the classrooms, inclusion, and diversity. But what it really teaches are the bigger themes we can all identify with: compassion, patience, and perspective.

"Like at the lunch table -- it's not rare to see some of the best buddies sitting with the football players or the cheerleaders and this club helps create that bond between them, " Davee said as she spoke of the program.

Best Buddies is a worldwide effort to wipe out bullying and give special needs teenagers everything they deserve and more. Davee is already wowing everyone with her passion.

It started with a special invitation to lobby in Tallahassee for Best Buddies. Then came the invitation to travel to Washington, D.C. to lobby lawmakers.

"We wanted them to sign the Eunice Kennedy Shriver Act and that puts everything into effect," Davee said.

She appeared with Shriver's son Tim, president and CEO of Special Olympics, lobbying with Best Buddies International, two causes his mother supported until her dying day.

Back at Plant, Davee continues the fight. Those high school years can be brutal for teenagers who might seem different than everyone else, but to her it just makes them all the more precious.

"These are people, they're people just like us," Davee said, "Yeah, they might have a different face than us or anything, but they are just like us: they have feelings, they have a heart, and they want to be here with you. They want to be friends with you."

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