Students raise funds for diabetes research
Published: Wednesday, October 30, 2013
Updated: Wednesday, October 30, 2013 23:10
“We will win” is printed on the silicone wristbands Lauren Henrie is selling at USU as part of a class project. However, Henrie isn’t selling them just for a grade. She is raising money to help find a cure for Type 1 diabetes.
The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation is the leading research organization working toward finding a cure for Type 1 diabetes. Funding raised through donations, such as those being raised by Henrie, is important to its research.
When her younger sister was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes five years ago, Henrie said it was really hard on her sibling.
“I have seen the way diabetes has dramatically impacted her life and changed the way she goes about every day,” Henrie said. “It is a huge challenge for her.”
Henrie’s group began selling the wristbands on Oct. 2 and will continue selling them until Nov. 22. The wristbands are $1 each and all the proceeds will be donated to the JDRF.
The JDRF, a national organization based out of New York, has a Utah chapter which helps raise money throughout the state. The organization’s research is focused on finding a cure for Type 1 diabetes. When people donate to the organization, JDRF takes that money and uses it for further research toward a cure and helping people get the best possible treatments.
“We need to accelerate and deliver research as quickly and efficiently as possible so we can maintain our goal of treating, preventing and curing Type 1 diabetes,” said Laura Western, JDRF’s executive director.
To raise donations, the Utah chapter of JDRF hosts six walking events, four in Utah and two in Idaho. According to Western, roughly 10,000 people participate in these walks. These efforts have helped raise about $1 million so far, but JDRF’s goal is to reach $1.4 million this year through these walks.
Western said JDRF provides many community outreach efforts for families who are struggling with diabetes. They often host events where parents and children can come and meet other families who are also struggling with the disease. JDRF helps families meet government officials who can help get them involved in the quest for a cure.
“We need thousands of people collectively engaged to help find a cure for Type 1 diabetes,” Western said. “Every effort helps.”
Henrie said her group is selling the wristbands to raise awareness of diabetes and to promote Aggie spirit — the theme behind the slogan, “We will win,” is taken from the university’s fight song. The wristbands are sold in three colors: white, blue and silver.
“It feels great to help people make a difference,” said Dan Mosman, the group leader for the project. “It's amazing to enable such a large amount of people to feel the fulfillment of contributing to the JDRF.”
The group’s goal is to raise and donate $1,000.
“Every dollar raised supports the important research that will lead to a cure,” Western said. “Every penny makes a difference.”
The group will be selling wristbands at the Business building Thursday from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. and at other locations around campus and within Logan until the end November.
“I hope that one day my sister will be able to live a life without the constant challenge of T1 diabetes,” Henrie said.