About the program
Over 10 years ago, GRIOT members vocalized that the loss of friends and family members throughout the years, coupled with their apprehension in engaging in and receiving traditional supportive services (such as home attendant services), offered by community providers created a sense of isolation and impacted the quality of their lives.
As a result, an informal peer-to-peer caregiver program coined Buddy-2-Buddy was created.
The program is designed to bring LGBTQ elders of color the care, companionship, and community they seek by pairing them together in relationships of mutual respect and support.
The program is open to everyone and serves as a support network that allows participants to create hybrid families to help address isolation. Buddies provide one another with an array of services and mutual support that includes, but is not limited to:
The goal of the program is to help decrease isolation, depression, and feelings of hopelessness particularly for those who live alone or who are institutionalized in nursing homes, hospitals, or rehabilitation facilities and have neither family or friends who visit or advocate on their behalf; enhances social and educational opportunities; helps in disseminating information regarding benefits and entitlements for the elderly; as well as provides support for persons with chronic illnesses.
Lastly, this program acts as another layer of intervention by allowing Buddies to be linked to the organization’s case manager for appropriate supportive services, interventions, advocacy, referrals and assistance with benefits and entitlements that improve their emotional, psychological, and economic situation.
Leadership Development Opportunities
The Buddy-to-Buddy Peer Caregiver Program provides members with multiple opportunities to examine their own leadership styles and characteristics through reflective supervision, integrative trainings, and fellowship support groups. By receiving supportive coaching and trainings, Buddies will be able to identify their strengths, provide care, cultivate companionship, and build community as leaders in the LGBTQ, aging, people of color movement.
Exclusive Programs and Workshops
Exclusive Programs and Workshops available to those enrolled in the Buddy-2-Buddy Peer Caregiver Program include: a Monthly Spa Day, Outings to the Central Park Zoo as well as additional locations, Pop-up Haircuts and other shops, Monthly Wellness Checks and the chance to sit on the Buddy-2-Buddy Committee.