Diabetes Scholars – Generosity In Action

The Diabetes Scholars Foundation does amazing work.  They raise money to help get families and young adults to Friends for Life conferences.  As if that isn’t enough, they also raise money to get young adults to college. I’ve written about what they do in the past.  I am a big supporter of them and appreciate all of the hard work they do.

At each Friends for Life conference, Diabetes Scholars holds some sort of fundraising event. I have attended for the past two years. Each year, at each event, I am blown away by the generosity displayed. The money raised at the Friends for Life events goes directly to bringing families and young adults to future Friends for Life conference.

These conferences change lives. They change lives. Don’t take my word for it.  Have a look at just some of the blog posts in the diabetes online community about this year’s conference.

I’m blown away by the items that were donated, I’m blown away by the number of people that attend, I’m blown away by the money raised. I’m just blown away by all of it.

I’m writing this to give you an idea of what exactly happens at a Diabetes Scholars event. Not enough people know about it, and that is one small area where I can contribute.  Sharing news of good people doing good work is something I am happy to do.

There is a live auction, complete with an auctioneer!

Cool, right?

There is also a silent auction, with donated items lined up, from end to end, on both walls.  The number of items given to help bring people to Friends for Life is amazing.  I grabbed a few pictures, but they don’t do the event justice.

I was able to snag, with the help of Kelly, a cool necklace for my wife, for about $25.  A great deal and the money goes towards a great cause.  I only wish I had more to spend!

(Big shout out to Jeff Mather for helping me figure out how to work my blog gallery…)

How did they do this year?  Straight from Mary Podjasek, just a few days after the event (“Howl” was the entertainment – dueling pianos):

After paying Howl and the Marriott, it looks like we cleared $36,000. This means we can bring 25 families and 5 young adults next year. This year we brought 22 families and 7 young adults but had almost 100 applications. We would love to one day be able to bring everyone that applies. There is such a huge need. Thanks to everyone who helped to make our event such a success. Let’s try for $75,000 next year!!

Way to go!  As she said above, there is such a huge need.

How can you help?  Spread the word. Donate auction items.  Donate money.  Attend their events. Spread the word some more.  There are lots of ways you can help, even if you are not in a position to help financially.

Not enough people know about this great organization and what they do.  That is something I can help with.  So can you.

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8 thoughts on “Diabetes Scholars – Generosity In Action

  1. Scott, thanks for the shout-out and support. As a DSF Board member I am pleased to join you in acknowledging the incredible work Mary Podjasek put in on this years event…as well as her vision to have it grow and help more families touched by T1. I think there is a lot of year-round on-line legwork that internet savvy folks could help her with…and the bigger the event gets the more help she’s going to need. I’m sure she has very definite ideas about this, and suspect she might chime in on the most efficient ways to pursue this.

    More basically, it really helps to just keep encouraging folks to come and enjoy in the event…The more the merrrier and the merrier the folks the bigger the success will be. A really valuable way to help is to simply encourage folks to buy their tickets early! The door pays for the event and determines the food budget, so brisk advance sales alone can take a lot of the planning anxiety away…and ultimately lead to improved munchies since the caterers do their prep days in advance and last minute adjustments tend to result in adding simpler nibbles. Consider getting together with some special friends to make it an evening. The Tom Karyla show alone is worth the price of admission!

    We want the event to be comfortable for everyone and strive to have a wide range of items and values in the auction. This year there was something for everyone to bid on…from $5 to $XXXXX…and bargains abounded. We intend to keep this up and as Mary noted donations of auction items are always welcome. Don’t be shy about asking if an unused antique, collectable or vintage item you have around might attract interest.

    We also love to draw on the wide range of skills and talents in the CWD/FFL world (look at Rich’s wonderful pottery, or Natalie, Gary and Crystal’s donations of consulting for example) so if you’re an artist please consider donating something special you’ve made to the auction. We’d also love to get some old jewelry that could be resurrected as something new and desirable… what better use for an old fashined necklace or desanctified engagement ring than to have it bring a couple families to CWD?


  2. Scott-Thanks so much for all your kind words. It was a great event that raised a lot of money to bring a lot of families to a fantastic conference. We all know what a Friends for Life conference has done for our families and now we can help others experience it also.
    Mary Podjasek

  3. We had a great time, I am so glad I was able to come. I live in FL so if you need help with set up or whatever next year let me know. I can write a few donation letters too 🙂