Three members of the Staples High School chapter of Best Buddies International recently attended the nonprofit organization's annual conference at Indiana University in Bloomington, Ind.

Faculty advisor Patty McQuone and Joe Aftab, chapter co-president, and Andor Mate, chapter adviser to the conference, attended the gathering to learn how to better the chapter and develop new friendships with members from around the world. Aftab and Mate will enter their senior years at Staples this fall.

The Staples chapter has been recognized as the highest fundraising team for the BB Friendship Walk in 2011 and 2012. It was also honored this as the Outstanding Chapter in the State of Connecticut, according to a news release.

In addition, McQuone has received the Outstanding Advisor Award in Connecticut

Best Buddies, founded in 1989 by Anthony K. Shriver, is an international agency with chapters in 1,500 schools worldwide that works to create friendships and employment for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.