Yes, you. I’m talking to you with the diabetes.*
Wanted to give you a quick update on what’s going on with The Diabetes UnConference. (And if you don’t know what it is… please go to www.DiabetesUnConference.com and learn about the first multi-day peer-to-peer idea exchange for ALL adults with diabetes (Type 1, Type 2, Type I want to talk about my diabetes…) being held at the Flamingo Las Vegas from March 13 - 15, 2015.
Room Block Deadline: February 10, 2020
The super-duper low room rate at The Flamingo Las Vegas, where the conference is being held, is only available until February 10, 2020. (This means you can count the days left on two hands if you have all ten fingers. If you don’t, well… borrow.)
After that, they release the room block to the hoards of basketball fans who will descend on Las Vegas for March Madness. (We root for Team Diabetes UnConference. We are undefeated.)
Don’t get caught paying a stupidly high rate for a room that you can get for a song (if that song costs $69.00+applicable tax and fees) through The Diabetes UnConference room block. Check out the information about The Flamingo Las Vegas here. And book your room here.
Attendee Registration Deadline: March 1, 2020
Even if you aren’t planning on staying at the hotel, please register by March 1st. We won’t be able to accommodate walk-ups, as head counts must be given to catering and for the incredible Dexcom sponsored High Roller event. I would hate for anyone to not be able to participate because they waited until the last minute. I can’t “squeeze you in”. Don’t miss out.
Why Should You Come To The Diabetes UnConference?
You can learn why I think you should come. Watch this interview where I make a lot of funny faces and answer questions (thank to TuDiabetes for the hilarious chat!):
Of course, you don’t have to take my word for it. Take their words:
- DiabetesMine’s words
- A Sweet Life’s words
- Kerri Sparling of Six Until Me’s words
- Stephen of Happy-Medium’s words
- Rhonda of Fifteen Wait Fifteen’s words
- Diabetes Daily’s words
- Heather of Unexpected Blues’ words
- Kelly of Diabetesaliciousness’ Words
We want you to be there. We want you to feel like you can talk openly about diabetes without judgment and learn from others. We want you to join us for the crazy, zany, beautiful things that will happen.
Don’t miss out. We don’t want to miss you.
*And you with the desire to help those with diabetes. We love you, too. While you can’t join us this year, you can help spread the word. Don’t worry… we have plans for you to come next year!
The diabetes community has something in common besides malfunctioning pancreases*: our giving nature.
*I prefer pancrei, but Webster’s would probably laugh at the petition.
We do it all year round and in many ways: Spare A Rose, Save A Child; JDRF and ADA Walks, volunteering time and talent to projects like Nightscout (CGM in The Cloud) and Tidepool, sharing knowledge and much needed support through non-profits like Diabetes Hands Foundation and diaTribe (who is celebrating their First Anniversary as a non-profit!) and much more.
So, it seems strange to ask you to donate today, because you already do so much to help others in our community, but here I go, hat in hand (but a lovely chapeau it is, bedecked in feathers and a wide brim)…
Whether it is a few minutes or a few dollars, please consider helping these worthy causes today:
It costs you nothing, but the addition of your voice is priceless.
We have two days left to tell the FDA that patients should be involved in every discussion, at every level, when it comes to the devices we use to keep us healthy and safe. Go here, read the easy steps, and add your comments to the FDA docket. (It closes December 4th, so giddy up, cowboy.)
I’m truthfully astonished to see how far the diabetes community has come in the last year, rallying to ensure the FDA understands how important our opinions matter. They’ve been stellar at recognizing and working with us, but there are no resting on laurels, because while we know it and some forward-thinking individuals know it, not everyone does. Until there’s a cure, all we have is our voice. Give it today.
You’re Going To Shop, So Might As Well Give At The Same Time
Full disclosure: When I’m not being a rabble rouser or loving on my family, I’m the founder of The Diabetes Collective, Inc., which is a recognized 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, created to fund programs like The Diabetes UnConference. There are so many wonderful non-profits out there that focus on living well with diabetes, so why create one more? Because there wasn’t a program designed to bring all adults with diabetes together to share their thoughts and get support in a safe environment. In order to make that happen (and some other things that will be coming after the first Diabetes UnConference is in the bag), The Diabetes Collective, Inc. was founded.
Amazon has a program called AmazonSmile and you can select The Diabetes Collective as your charitable organization.
“The AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price from your eligible AmazonSmile purchases. The purchase price is the amount paid for the item minus any rebates and excluding shipping & handling, gift-wrapping fees, taxes, or service charges. From time to time, we may offer special, limited time promotions that increase the donation amount on one or more products or services or provide for additional donations to charitable organizations.”
There is NO additional cost to you. The prices on Amazon are the same as if you are shopping without the AmazonSmile selection.
Please consider helping this way by choosing The Diabetes Collective, Inc. as your non-profit organization and help support the scholarships we provide to bring people with diabetes together to have the discussions they can’t have with their doctors or family.
If You Got a Penny or Two to Share…
You can donate directly to The Diabetes Collective, Inc. by clicking on the button below or on this link. It will take you directly to a secure PayPal checkout.
This is a tax-deductible donation so you’ll get a tax receipt from The Diabetes Collective, Inc. for 2014. Any amount will help.
But I also want to direct you to another amazing opportunity that is near and dear to my heart: The Bionic Pancreas.
You can donate (and it’s tax -deductible) here:
There you have it. Three ways to give: no money, giving through shopping, and giving through tax donation. Do one, two, or all three.
Wait. Stop. There’s one more way to give.
You can share this post with your friends. Your family. Strangers on the street. Tell them about how important a role diabetes plays in your life (even though you don’t want it to…) and how they can help you and millions of other people. (And if you don’t follow this blog on Twitter or Facebook, please do! I’m funny on all sorts of social media avenues!)
So, give. Whether it’s your time, your shopping acumen, or with a financial gift. I adore you for even allowing me to put it out there.
Give what you can.
Do what you can.
And we are grateful.
I quietly announced Sunday on The Diabetes UnConference’s website that scholarships to the conference are available, thanks to our generous sponsors and The Diabetes Collective, Inc., a Florida not-for-profit corporation. Everyone was on vacation or not looking at the Internet, so I got to ease into this wonderful announcement.
Are you an adult with diabetes? Do you want to be a part of the only conference where all adults with diabetes can talk about the psychosocial aspects of living with diabetes? Do you want to come to Vegas? Do you want to have fun?
Then you need to apply. Now. The scholarship deadline will close on September 30, 2014.
What type of scholarships are available?
There are scholarships for Medicare recipients, Type 1s and Type 2s. There are full and partial scholarships. There is something for every adult with diabetes.
I want everyone to come and I’m so glad that these scholarships are possible. Even if you aren’t awarded a scholarship, I hope you’ll be able to come.
A lot of very cool announcements will be made this week about what’s going on at The Diabetes UnConference. If you’re interested in keeping up to date on the latest news, then you can subscribe to the newsletter (which is awesome, but I’m biased).
The early bird full registration of $139 per person will end on September 30, 2014. If you are on the fence (or applying for a scholarship), you can still register and if you receive a full scholarship, you will be refunded your registration fee.
Wait. What do I get for my registration fee?
- Entrance to the Friday night Special Event
- A spiffy t-shirt
- Breakfast, lunch, and snacks on Saturday
- Snacks on Sunday
- Non-alcoholic beverages for the Saturday and Sunday conference (coffee, tea, soft drinks, etc.)
- An exclusive special event on Saturday night from one of our sponsors that will make you feel like you’re on top of the world
- Intimate access to certain companies who want to hear what you have to say about products and devices made for us
- The feeling of safety and connection with others, knowing you can say just about anything related to living with diabetes and someone else “gets it”
Is it worth it?
Yes. Yes. Yes.
So, register. Apply for the scholarships. Get signed up for the newsletter. Tell your friends who have diabetes. Make it a “friends weekend”. Make it an “about me” weekend.
You won’t be disappointed.
I’ve been keeping a secret from you.
It’s a good secret, but a lot of work needed to happen before I could share this…
To admit that I’m scared that this will be a colossal fail and that no one will want to come would be true.
I hope that I’m wrong.
I hope that this will be everything that our community needs and wants and that this will be the beginning of something amazing.
This has been a long time coming.
The original idea was simply a wish that I frequently uttered quietly (often to myself) at the end of diabetes conferences or meetings:
“I wish that we could just sit and talk about living with diabetes and how we feel about living with it. Share with each other. Learn from each other.”
I articulated this wish at the Medtronic Diabetes Advocacy Summit in January during a brainstorming session about what each of us wanted to accomplish for the diabetes community.
“No tracks to choose. No keynote sessions. No separation of people by category or type. Real discussions in a safe place about the psychosocial aspects of our lives with diabetes with others who get it. We decide what we want to talk about - and then we talk about it.”
There were nods in that room (and one or two exclamations of “Hell, yes!”). I left that meeting with a head full of ideas about this… but I couldn’t do it by myself.
That’s what a community does. It helps, supports, and celebrates. With some gentle prodding from some advocates and the amazing emotional backing of my husband, I quietly created The Diabetes Collective, Inc., a Florida non-profit corporation (currently waiting for the IRS to bestow that 501 (c)(3) designation) and signed a contract with Caesar’s.
It’s on. It’s begun.
Please read below - and share the excitement with me for The Diabetes UnConference.
If you are an adult with diabetes, come join me (and others just like me and you) in… Las Vegas from March 12 to 15, 2015.
I would love to meet you and learn from you and others about living well with diabetes.
Here’s the official announcement.
The Diabetes Collective, Inc. is pleased to announce The Diabetes UnConference, the first peer-to-peer support conference for all adults with diabetes.
The Diabetes UnConference will be held at the Flamingo Las Vegas from March 12 - 15, 2015.
The first of its kind, The Diabetes UnConference follows the “unconference” concept of peer-to-peer idea exchange made popular by the tech community. The actual agenda is set the first morning of the conference, drawing from the needs and desires of the attendees and discussions will focus on the psychosocial aspects of living with diabetes.
Manny Hernadez, co-founder of TuDiabetes.org and winner of the Community Spirit Award from the American Diabetes Association, states: “Life with diabetes is challenging enough to go about it on your own. Peer support is essential to thrive for people with diabetes. It is also critical to help us build the kind of movement we need to have around this condition that affects more than 26 million people in the US and 400 million people worldwide.”
Founded by Christel Marchand Aprigliano, The Diabetes UnConference is facilitated by volunteers well known to the diabetes community: Bennet Dunlap, Heather Gabel, Manny Hernandez, Scott K. Johnson, George Simmons, and Kerri Sparling. These diabetes community leaders are familiar with the topics that will be covered; each live with diabetes.
Topics may include dealing with depression and diabetes, countering burnout, diabetes “life hacks”, dating, parenting with diabetes, revealing your diabetes to others, and much more.
Peer to peer support has been shown to be highly beneficial to those living with diabetes. The report, “Peer Support in Health – Evidence to Action,” summarizing findings from the first National Peer Support Collaborative Learning Network shared that: “Among 20 studies of diabetes management, 19 showed statistically significant evidence of benefits of peer support.”
For more information and to register, visit www.diabetesunconference.com.