Imagine, after some suspicious events, you and your mother or father are on the way to the hospital for you. After waiting and waiting, the nurse finally comes back and confirms that your blood is positive for Juvenile Diabetes. After that one sentence, your life is flipped upside down. No more unlimited amounts of sugar. No more sweets for Halloween. No more candy. Well, this was my story on the night of January 6, 2006.
Barely one week later, I received a backpack of gifts and information on Juvenile Diabetes from the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, or JDRF. This is a supportive group of people who care. They have dedicated their lives to finding a cure for Juvenile Diabetes, or Type 1, and that’s why they are my heroes.
JDRF does many things, but mostly they improve the lives of Type 1 diabetics. Everyday they are finding new ways to raise money to find a cure for diabetes. Diabetics who work at JDRF sometimes counsel diabetics who have problems adjusting to their new style of life. They help to create and research technologies to better the lives of diabetics so they don’t have to stay on a regulated schedule. Early last year, JDRF contributed over $900 million to researchers to find a cure for diabetes. Dedicating their lives’ work to finding a cure for those in need, the JDRF also raises money through events like their Walk for the Cure. The people at JDRF care and, through their work, it shows.
JDRF is a worldwide foundation, but there are places in the United States where they reside. Like the headquarters of the foundation is in New York City. But JDRF is in other states too. Although it was started in the U.S., it spread worldwide. JDRF was started in 1970 by many parents of children with Juvenile Diabetes. Since then, they have raised enough money to create many things to better the lives of Type 1 diabetics. Nationwide, and even worldwide, there are companies who are gracious donors.
|Magnified image of pancreatic islets, which contain insulin-producing beta cells.
There are many reasons why JDRF is a hero to me. For one, being a diabetic has an effect on my life. It’s just good to know there are people out there who really care. Even before I was a diabetic, my parents were, and I had heard about what JDRF does for diabetics with no other choices. My mom works for a local grocery store headquarters which works closely with JDRF. They "run" a fund raiser and have people buy paper shoes to write their name on. Like I said, it’s nice to know there is someone out there who cares.
My life has been impacted by JDRF because they do things to improve life. JDRF has raised money for scientists to research a cure for this disease. They have improved life with new technologies like new, better insulin* that lasts longer. An insulin pump** also makes the life of diabetics easier, because they only have to give themselves a shot once and the pump does the rest. Education about the disease has improved in medical schools because of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. Teachers at medical schools teach the medical students more and they help at hospitals to treat diabetic patients. So really, more than just JDRF is helping to find a cure. There are more kind hearts than just a few in this world.
Parents of juvenile diabetics formed JDRF to raise money for their children or family members. Today, JDRF is still researching the cure. Today they are changing lives. It has been a year from the date when I was diagnosed with juvenile diabetes. That’s why JDRF is my hero.
*insulin - the chemical that is naturally produced by an organ in the body. Juvenile diabetics don’t create that substance so they take insulin shots through syringes.***
**insulin pump - a device created to give a day’s insulin through one system and syringe.
***syringe - a loadable needle that can be used to take insulin.
"Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation is the world's leading nongovernmental, nonprofit funder of research to cure Type 1 diabetes, which strikes children suddenly, makes them insulin dependent for life, and carries the constant threat of devastating complications. JDRF is among the world's most efficient charities, in a typical year spending 85 cents of every dollar on research and education about research."