JDRF Palmetto Chapter Raises Awareness of Type 1 Diabetes on World Diabetes Day, November 14

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The JDRF Palmetto Chapter is highlighting various initiatives throughout the Lowcountry to raise awareness of Type 1 Diabetes surrounding World Diabetes Day, November 14. The local Charleston arm of the Chapter has also started to plan its major fundraising event, the Charleston JDRF One Walk, slated for March 6, 2016.

JDRF, the only global diabetes foundation with a strategic plan to end type 1 diabetes (T1D), is focused throughout November, National Diabetes Awareness Month (NDAM), on raising awareness of type 1 diabetes. One way the Charleston arm of the local JDRF Palmetto Chapter is engaged in furthering the goal of progressively removing the impact of T1D from people’s lives is to spread awareness tomorrow, internationally recognized as World Diabetes Day.

T1D is an autoimmune disease in which a person’s pancreas stops producing insulin, a hormone people need to get energy from food. T1D strikes both children and adults at any age and suddenly. Its onset has nothing to do with diet or lifestyle. T1D requires rigorous monitoring of blood glucose levels and administration of insulin through injections or pumps throughout every day.

“T1D is relentless and life-threatening. There are no days off. The treatment changes constantly and engages you every hour of every day. This is why we fight for a cure and better treatments for the roughly 1.25 million people in the U.S. with T1D,” remarks Paige Kuehmeier, the Charleston JDRF One Walk Chair and local Development Coordinator.

In support of World Diabetes Day, the Chapter highlights the following opportunities to get involved in turning Type 1 into “Type None:”

  • The Medical University of South Carolina’s (MUSC) hospital will light the North Tower blue beginning at dusk on November 13th and lasting through Saturday morning, November 15th in support of all those with diabetes. “Over 600 patients and families are followed in our pediatric diabetes clinic. Our goal is to offer the best treatments, find a cure, and prevent diabetes. Increasing awareness of this chronic disease can improve rates of detection in our community,” says Dr. Deborah Bowlby, Division Chief of the MUSC Pediatric Endocrinology clinic. Bowlby continues, “If you notice a child is drinking more, urinating more, or has unexplained weight loss, have them evaluated by a physician.”
  • Also going blue are the supporters of those with T1D throughout the Lowcountry who will uploading pictures wearing blue for the cause to their social media accounts using the hashtag #WDD2015.
  • Locally, the Charleston arm of the JDRF Palmetto Chapter and its members have been participating all month long in the new nationwide JDRF campaign, “T1D Looks Like Me.” Individuals with T1D and their parents, caretakers, siblings, grandparents and friends have stormed social media channels with pictures showing the faces of T1D, spreading awareness that T1D does not discriminate and diagnoses continue to grow at an alarming rate. Without intervention, nearly 5 million people are expected to be living with T1D by 2050.
  • The Chapter has also kicked off its planning for the Charleston JDRF One Walk to be held on March 6, 2016 on Daniel Island. The event has raised over $550,000 in local dollars since inception and over $130,000 just last year. Kuehmeier notes, “Family teams are eager to capitalize on what they were able to contribute last year, and have already started forming teams for the 2016 walk. We are excited to offer local businesses exceptional sponsorship opportunities. The Charleston One Walk is a great way to support your employees with T1D and those in your community that fight this disease each and every day.”

For more information about the JDRF Palmetto Chapter’s local efforts in Charleston or to get involved with the 2016 One Walk, please visit http://www.facebook.com/Charleston.JDRF.Walk.

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About JDRF
JDRF is the leading global organization funding type 1 diabetes (T1D) research. Our mission is to accelerate life-changing breakthroughs to cure, prevent and treat T1D and its complications. To accomplish this, JDRF has invested nearly $2 billion in research funding since our inception. We are an organization built on a grassroots model of people connecting in their local communities, collaborating regionally for efficiency and broader fundraising impact, and uniting on a national stage to pool resources, passion, and energy. We collaborate with academic institutions, policymakers, and corporate and industry partners to develop and deliver a pipeline of innovative therapies to people living with T1D. Our staff and volunteers in more than 100 locations throughout the United States and our six international affiliates are dedicated to advocacy, community engagement and our vision of a world without T1D. For more information, please visit jdrf.org or follow us on Twitter: @JDRF.

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Kelly Engelbert
Charleston JDRF Walk
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