My place of employment offers it's employees a chance to give back to things they care about by donating money to groups that they volunteer their time with. This year, for my particular area, this has been a pretty big focus point. Because, although they are a behemoth and get a lot of bad press, they also do a lot of good. For me that meant an opportunity to get a few more people involved in the JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes. I haven't pushed my fundraising at all this year, settling for a few Facebook posts and a collection jar at work, offering my co-workers a chance to see me in drag if the price is right. So far, that's not looking like an incentive for them. Who knew?!! And yesterday we were lucky enough to have a radio station on site and a chance to sell some drinks and popcorn for donations. The event was kind of dropped in my lap at the last minute with no real idea on direction or help with planning so it was a bit of a cluster (to put it lightly). In the end I raised a whopping $10.50. Go me! As I sat there watching people walk by without a second glance I got a bit discouraged. Thinking that if my table had a big pink ribbon on it and I was raising money for a more glamorous disease that more people would be stopping. But then one of the parents who I had invited to speak came and I listened as the DJ for the radio station interviewed her. She wasn't really sure what to say but she did such a great job explaining what it means to raise a T1 child and the devastation of the diagnosis brought to their family. The money collected wasn't quite what I had hoped it would be. But, that wasn't really what is about, even if it took me a bit to figure that out. A year ago I was only able to get about 5 people from work on my walk team. This year it should be more like 20. A year ago I wouldn't have thought we would ever get a radio station out the help us spread the word. Next year I'll have a better idea what will work and what won't for this type of thing and hopefully have a little more planning and organization into it. Although I feel like I've stretched myself a little thin again taking on multiple time consuming volunteer opportunities I'm very glad that I'm doing it. At the beginning of the year I said I was going to focus more on volunteering and less on fundraising and that's what I'm doing. I'll likely not hit my goal for my team, but I'm meeting more people in the local T1D community and everytime I meet another parent of a child with diabetes I gain even more respect for them. I am not thankful for many things that come with this disease, but I am thankful that I was diagnosed as an adult, not a child, because I don't know how my parents would have been able to take that on, and I'm thankful I have it and not my kids. I don't think I could bear to see either of them go through this. Walk day is less than a week away as the logistics chairperson it is going to be a whirlwind few days, but I am so thankful for the opportunity.
Although I believe my time and experience is more valuable than the money I could raise, every dollar helps, and if you'd like to donate to my team you can do so here.