Dear Friends and Family,
Our elder son Stuart has faced the challenge of type 1 diabetes for eight years now. There is nothing we can currently do to make this disease go away, but we can empower him and give him the tools to lead the normal, active life of an 11-year-old. One of those tools has been his OmniPod insulin pump, which is very effective at controlling his insulin levels, but also easy to operate and maintain. A major milestone for Stuart this year was attending a week of overnight camp for children dealing with diabetes. There he had two great experiences: first, he learned out to change his pod, the device affixed under his skin to deliver insulin on a regular basis, completely by himself, freeing him up for sleepovers or visits to grandparents without the fear that his hosts couldn't deal with this process; second, he was able to engage in all of the camp activities, including zip lining into a lake, without anyone asking whether a diabetic kid should be doing it. Stuart returned from camp with an increased level of confidence and resolution to deal responsibly with his disease.
Where does JDRF fit into our story? Significant research dollars contributed by JDRF (and therefore by many of you in past years' support of our walk team) funded the efforts to develop, test and gain FDA approval for the OmniPod. These same research dollars have enabled clinical trials of a Samsung smart phone that monitors blood sugars and directs the dosages of insulin automatically, the so-called artificial pancreas. Who would have thought that one minute Stuart could be playing Minecraft or Angry Birds and the next minute he could flip to another app and check his insulin compliance? That day will come thanks to JDRF and your support.
We strongly support JDRF's Walk to Cure Diabetes. JDRF is a non-profit organization with the sole mission of raising and directing funds to the development of a cure for juvenile diabetes. JDRF allocates over 80% of contributions directly toward diabetes research, receives top rankings from independent sources that rate charitable giving and has funded over $1.6 billion in research since its founding in 1970.
This year marks the eighth anniversary of Stuart's diagnosis with type 1diabetes and our eighth Walk to Cure Diabetes. With your help over these years, we have raised almost $190,000 for JDRF. We are going to have to go further, though, to get that app on the smart phone and the assurance that this disease will not impair Stuart's life on a long-term basis. Just a small donation from you could represent the funds needed to spur the clinical trial or experimental drug development that will bring this about.
We ask you to help us in the following ways:
For those with employers offering matching gifts programs, we urge you to file a match request. To do this you'll need the organization name, address and tax ID number:
205 Regency Executive Park Drive, Suite 102, Charlotte, NC 28217
Tax ID: 23-1907729
Thank you for the assistance so many of you have already provided, and for any additional help you can offer. Thank you for helping ensure that Stuart's diabetes can go away.
With sincere thanks,
Jennifer, Doug, Stuart and Duncan
Stuart's Little Engine That Could Team
We think we can, we think we can, we think we can cure diabetes.
2304 Dilworth Road West
Charlotte, NC 28203
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