JDRF Illinois One Walk raises funds for research, education about Type 1 diabetes

JDRF Illinois One Walk raises funds for research, education about Type 1 diabetes

JDRF Illinois' main goal is to turn Type 1 diabetes (T1D) into type none.

Through research and advocacy, the organization is working to make life easier for those living with the autoimmune disease, and to eradicate it entirely for future generations.

According to its website,, T1D is a disease where the body's immune system destroys the beta cells in the pancreas, making them dependent on external insulin administration for life. The keys to changing the course of T1D are disease-modifying therapies that can help people no matter where they are in their diabetes journey - from first diagnosis to living with it for years.

JDRF works to fund research into these and other types of cures, advocacy for government action and providing support and education to the public, including the benefits of screenings.

"JDRF exists so T1D won't. The JDRF mission is to improve lives today and tomorrow by accelerating life-changing breakthroughs to cure, prevent and treat T1D and its complications through advocacy and research," said Kacie Herbst, JDRF Illinois' Senior Development Manager of Signature Events, in an email.

"JDRF partners are the reason for its success. Every dollar JDRF puts toward research comes from donations. When partners support JDRF with time, talent and donations, they allow the organization to advance even more research."

To help with this vital work, JDRF is hosting its suburban One Walk at College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn Sunday, Oct. 8. For information or to register to participate, visit

Herbst talks more about JDRF Illinois' mission and the upcoming walk.

Q: What is JDRF Illinois? Give a brief overview of what the organization does and who you serve.

A: JDRF is the leading global Type 1 diabetes organization harnessing the power of research, advocacy and community engagement for the T1D community.

From funding innovative research that has delivered life-changing technological breakthroughs for the type 1 community, to providing a robust support structure for T1D families, JDRF is committed to creating a brighter future for the disease and finding a cure. JDRF Illinois is JDRF's largest and highest-grossing chapter.

Q: How many people do you serve each year?

A: Each year, JDRF Illinois executes a variety of fundraising and community engagement events to provide life-changing innovations for the T1D community and to improve the lives of the 1.45 million Americans living with T1D.

The One Walk brings together nearly 10,000 local community members, the TypeOneNation Summit hosts over 600 attendees and the annual One Dream Gala gathers nearly 2,000 volunteers and attendees.

Q: What are some of the programs you offer?

A: JDRF One Walk: This is the world's largest T1D event. JDRF One Walk gives people with T1D, their loved ones, companies and the local community the opportunity to create change and positively impact the lives of those living with T1D.

• JDRF Illinois One Dream Gala: The gala features silent and live auctions, a dinner, live entertainment and a night of fundraising. Last year's event raised $16 million, the highest-grossing fundraising event in JDRF's national history.

• TypeOneNation Summit: The JDRF Illinois TypeOneNation Summit in Rosemont brings together the T1D community for education, interactive experiences, peer connection and more.

• JDRF Bag of Hope: JDRF is often the first point of contact for newly diagnosed individuals and their families. Providing support and resources for all ages and stages of T1D, JDRF produces the Bag of Hope, which is filled with useful resources for both the T1D diagnosed child and their caregivers.

• JDRF Young Leadership Committee (YLC): The YLC is a group of young business and civic professionals who actively support JDRF and Type 1 diabetes research. The YLC members have unique ties to T1D - many live with it, others are connected through friends or family, and some simply have a passion for the cause. The common thread: all want to turn type one into type none.

• JDRF Youth Ambassadors: JDRF Illinois Youth Ambassadors are children and teens living with T1D between the ages of 8 and 18 who are involved with the educational, fundraising and community volunteer efforts of JDRF. The Youth Ambassador Program teaches young people to raise awareness of Type 1 diabetes in their community.

JDRF Illinois helps its youth ambassadors gain confidence in public speaking, demonstrate leadership skills and collaborate with T1D peers while advancing the mission of JDRF through fundraising and storytelling. Those chosen to serve as Youth Ambassadors are community representatives of JDRF supporting our vision of a world without T1D.

Q: Where do the majority of your funds come from to support your work?

A: Fundraising support for JDRF's mission is largely thanks to its community members and corporate partnerships in support of JDRF's local events, including the One Walk and One Dream Gala. JDRF also receives grants and corporate sponsorships.

Q: Tell us about the JDRF One Walk coming up at College of DuPage.

A: The world's largest T1D event, the JDRF One Walk, is returning to Chicagoland once again Sunday, Oct. 8. The suburban walk takes place at College of DuPage, 425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn. Check-in begins at 8:30 a.m., followed by the 2K walk at 10 a.m.

Participants can stay for lunch and the after party featuring live entertainment and the Jesse White Tumblers.

All walkers must register at, and are asked to fundraise for this event. Those who raise at least $100 will receive a T-shirt.

Q: How can readers help your organization?

A: Connect with the team at the local JDRF Illinois Chapter and learn more ways you can get involved and support the T1D community. Become an advocate, volunteer, attend events, and follow JDRF Illinois on social media to help spread the word.

The beginning of a previous JDRF Illinois One Walk event. This year's suburban walk takes place Oct. 8 at College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn. Courtesy of JDRF Illinois
One Walk participants stop by the check-in tent at a previous fundraiser. The walk raises funds for JDRF Illinois, which uses the proceeds for research, advocacy and education about Type 1 diabetes. Courtesy of JDRF Illinois
A family takes part in a previous One Walk for JDRF Illinois. This year's event in Glen Ellyn features kids activities, lunch and live entertainment. Courtesy of JDRF Illinois

JDRF One Walk

What: Suburban JDRF fundraising walk for type 1 diabetes

When: Sunday, Oct. 8; check-in begins at 8:30 a.m., followed by the 2K walk at 10 a.m.

Where: College of DuPage, 425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn

Cost: Participants are asked to fundraise.

Details and registration: <a href=""></a>

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