Best Buddies Croatia – Inclusivity For The Disabled Community

Total Croatia News

Updated on:

best buddies croatia

August the 10th, 2023 – Meet Best Buddies Croatia, an American initiative hoping to make life easier, better and more connected for this country’s disabled population.

Croatia is a paradoxical country in many ways. In some things, it is far more forward thinking than other more developed European nations, and in others, it lags behind so far that it borders on unacceptable. The population numbers less than four million if we’re going to go by the last census, and in that four million, there are a large number of individuals with various intellectual and developmental disabilities, as well as learning difficulties.

Despite the considerable amount of people with varying disabilities in this country, there isn’t an enormous amount of infrastructure or services solely for them. This is where Best Buddies Croatia comes in.

What does this initiative do and what can Best Buddies Croatia bring to this country’s disabled population?

Best Buddies programmes help people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) form meaningful friendships, secure jobs, live independently, develop self-advocacy and establish and improve all kinds of communication skills. Initiatives of this type in Croatia, while existing, are lacking. This leads to many people with disabilities or learning difficulties feeling forgotten about or left behind, floundering in waters which are frankly often unforgiving. Feelings of invisibility and marginalisation inevitably lead to mental health struggles, and the entire cycle becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Best Buddies Croatia is here to help mitigate the issues with evidence based practices, but this praiseworthy initiative needs your help to succeed.

Meet the country director, Nancy

Affectionately referred to as Nurse Nancy, Nancy Perovic is a semi-retired Croatian-American nurse who moved to Zupa Dubrovacka (the Parish of Dubrovnik) from Chicago in pandemic-dominated 2020. She has two daughters aged 22 and 25, both of whom have learning differences.

Seeing the disparities across the board when it comes to the proper inclusion of those with varying intellectual and developmental disabilities in Croatia spurred Nancy’s passion. She immediately saw the need for change and as such wants to bring the Best Buddies programme right here to Croatia to improve lives.

Best Buddies Croatia has had some media coverage, but more is needed to help Croatia’s disabled community

The Dubrovnik Times, a local Dubrovnik English language portal which offers visitors to the Pearl of the Adriatic everything from opinion pieces to information on events, has spoken about Best Buddies Croatia. Nancy has also appeared on DUTV, a local Dubrovnik TV channel.

Dubrovacki dnevnik, another local Dubrovnik-based portal has also put the spotlight on this selfless and very necessary initiative.

Powerpoint presentations in both Croatian and English can be viewed here and here, should you require more specific or detailed information on precisely what Best Buddies Croatia’s mission and aim are.

How you can help

In order to take off and get good footing in Croatia (which is no easy feat), Best Buddies Croatia needs to get its dedicated team to the European Best Buddies conference in Madrid. The conference in the Spanish capital takes place from the 4th to the 7th of October, 2023. CEO Anthony (Kennedy) Shriver and a representative from the Embassy of the United States of America will also be there.

If you want to see Best Buddies Croatia take off and provide inclusion, proper support, connection and the ability to thrive and be more independent to this country’s disabled population, please donate to this incredibly worthy cause by clicking here. Anything you have to spare will be enormously appreciated.

You can choose your method of donation and choose whether it is a single or monthly donation simply and easily. Click HERE to donate directly.

If you wish to get involved with Best Buddies Croatia in any capacity (either as a volunteer, a sponsor, or as a partner) please contact Nancy at [email protected], who will be happy to hear from you and answer any questions you may have.


Subscribe to our newsletter

the fields marked with * are required
Email: *
First name:
Last name:
Gender: Male Female
Please don't insert text in the box below!

Leave a Comment