JDRF Government Day 2011

I am so honored, as a grandmother of remarkable young man who just happens to have Type 1 Diabetes, to be a part of this advocacy process where what we do and what we say and the relationships we cultivate with our representatives can and will have an impact on the lives of all of our loved ones and future generations as well.

I have just come home from being in Washington DC with approximately 180 other empowered JDRF Advocates who converged on Capitol Hill Monday and Tuesday.  My husband and I delivered almost 60 letters to our congressmen.  These letters were  from families affected by  Type 1 Diabetes.  They were written by children with Type 1, adults who have been living with Type 1,  parents of  Type 1’s,  grandparents of  Type 1’s,  friends of Type 1’s and  advocates who just understand how important a cure for this disease is and are reminding their representatives that their help is needed to ensure long and healthy lives for our loved ones.

In addition to hand delivering these letters, we have asked our congressmen, congresswoman and senators to please sign on to a letter to FDA Commissioner Hamburg highlighting the need for guidance on the artificial pancreas.  This  letter encourages the FDA to quickly consider the research framework submitted by JDRF and other leading experts to ensure this process keeps moving forward and  these new technologies will be furthered tested as quickly as possible and made available as soon as possible.  The artificial pancreas has already been tested in hospitals.   Outpatient testing is the next step in the process and we can not wait years to get these trials started.

Part of our training this weekend also included sessions by bloggers who explained how being able to connect to others with similar struggles, as well as sharing their triumphs and just day to day thoughts, had huge impacts on their lives and the lives of their fellow bloggers.  As a JDRF advocate and a  grandparent of a Type 1 Diabetic, I don’t want to be left behind.

With the help of Scott and Kerri, who were so awesome and agreed to “get me started” I am going  to attempt to blog  and be a part of the DOC (Diabetic Online Community)!

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6 Comments

Filed under Government Day 2011

6 responses to “JDRF Government Day 2011

  1. Great new digs and happy to share some space with you in the ever-expanding Diabetes Online Community, Jeanne! It was great meeting you in D.C. and it was awesome to hear you were signing on here after sitting in on that group’s blogger roundtable session. Looking forward to hearing your perspective as a Type 3!

    • Thank you for checking in on me!! I’m afraid I have a lot to learn! I’ve been working on another post, but it certainly is not easy to put thoughts into words that make sense!! You guys are awesome and I can’t wait until I really know what I’m doing!! Blog on!!

  2. Hi Jeanne!

    Great post! You’re a professional blogger already!

    While it can be a challenge to put thoughts into words that make sense, that is what I find so therapeutic about blogging (or just writing in general). The exercise of finding words to fit those thoughts and emotions is healing to me.

    You’re doing great – and the more you do it, the more you’ll enjoy it! 🙂

  3. Camille Nash

    Hi Jeanne,

    Congratulations to the Edison Award winner, and what a comprehensive job you did of covering JDRF’s Government Day. Are you sure you’re new to blogging????? This blog looks like it was crafted by someone with a lot of experience (kudos to your blogging helpers, too).
    I loved reading your thoughts. I told my daughter when she was diagnosed at 12 years of age that although I couldn’t carry the burden of having the disease I’d do everything in my power to make sure there would be a cure and that daily life would be improved until that time. Although I’ve volunteered with many areas in JDRF, the Government Relations area really excited me. As you know, most of what we do as advocates is a lot less glamorous than our trip to DC, but that day to day work is what makes us successful, and our efforts can’t stop after our trip to DC. You are right, one voice does make a difference, and when our voices are combined, we are very powerful. Thank you for all your efforts, I am proud to work with you.

    • Thank you so much Camille. I totally understand how you feel about Government Relations. I never, in a million years, would have thought so before our grandson Robby was diagnosed. But now, I really feel like this is where I belong. I always feel so energized when I get back from DC…I am hoping that I can use this blogging stuff to connect with current advocates and maybe bring some new ones on board as well. It would be great to know what other advocates are doing on a regular basis. We all know about the Galas and the Walks and the Golf Tournaments, but I would like to see what others are doing to build relationships with families and their government representatives. I look forward to a great year with you at the helm!! Thank you so much for taking on this huge responsibility!

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