Fairytale-themed event supports diabetes research

Close to $107,000 generated at JDRF Starlight Gala in the battle against type 1 diabetes

  • Sun Nov 6th, 2016 7:00am
  • News

JDRF Youth Ambassadors Arielle and Mabel show off their matching insulin pumps before the evening gets started

With Alice in Wonderland serving as the backdrop, the Kelowna Okanagan chapter of JDRF raised close to $107,000 this year in the fight against type 1 diabetes.

Guests tumbled down the rabbit hole and experienced a little madness along the way at the festive, dramatically-styled fundraising event Oct. 22 at the Coast Capri Hotel.

The funds will be used to accelerate the discovery, development, and delivery of cutting edge advances to cure, better treat, and prevent type 1 diabetes (T1D).

In 11 years, the event has raised close to $1.5 million.

“I was thrilled to see people arriving in costume, really embracing the theme,” said says Shannon Jolley, manager of fundraising and development for JDRF Kelowna Okanagan. “Ours is such a fun gala, and people really let loose and had a good time.

“I am beyond grateful. Our guests, sponsors and volunteers are incredibly committed to finding a cure for type one diabetes, and this event is only possible because of them.”

JDRF (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) is the leading global organization focused on type 1 diabetes (T1D) research. The goal of JDRF research is to improve the lives of every person affected by T1D by accelerating progress on the most promising opportunities for curing, better treating, and preventing T1D.

Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is an autoimmune disease in which a person’s pancreas stops producing insulin, a hormone that enables people to get energy from food.

While its causes are not yet entirely understood, scientists believe that both genetic factors and environmental triggers are involved. Its onset has nothing to do with diet or lifestyle.

There is nothing you can do to prevent T1D, and—at present—nothing you can do to get rid of it.

Living with T1D is a constant challenge. People with the disease must carefully balance insulin doses (either by injections multiple times a day or continuous infusion through a pump) with eating and daily activities throughout the day and night.

They must also test their blood sugar by pricking their fingers for blood six or more times a day. Despite this constant attention, people with T1D still run the risk of dangerous high or low blood sugar levels, both of which can be life-threatening.

It is estimated that 300,000 Canadians of all ages live with type one diabetes.