JDRF Botanica Brisbane Gala

It’s a night more alive, and more richly coloured, than the day. Where the blooms are brightest under the soft glow of evening light. Alongside your fellow luminaries, you’ll explore Botanica with JDRF, to unlock new pathways in type 1 diabetes research.

More than 120,000 Australians and their families are facing the daily burden of living with type 1 diabetes (T1D). On Saturday evening I had the pleasure of supporting JDRF  (Juvenille Diabetes Research Foundation) at their Brisbane Botanica Gala with my friend Kim. My boss Tom, who has T1D, was also there to support the cause with a table of his close friends.

The venue was beautiful, the food and service superb (nice work Blackbird Bar & Grill) and everyone was in great spirits to raise much needed funds for JDRF.

With a rowdy crowd and drinks flowing, the emcee did well to keep the room at bay but the most interest came from The JDRF speaker, Dorota Pawlak, PhD Head of Research Development & Director T1DCRN. A hard act to follow, but the Fund A Cure speaker, Olivia Carter, a senior high school student at Moreton Bay College captivated the crowd as we all shared the ups and downs of her journey with T1D. Olivia was diagnosed in 2013 – she hopes to study medicine and become a paediatric endocrinologist.

There were plenty of online and live gala auction items, Matt Stewart’s (a big JDRF supporter) artwork was high on my list but went well out of my budget at 7k. The Brisbane Lion’s box was slow to start but that night’s win from the team gave the bidding a kick.

I won the online gala auction for two people to climb the Story Bridge. Funny thing is, I watch them climb it most days from my bedroom window! I’ve been meaning to give it a go for ages so it was perfect that I could support JDRF at the same time.

The gala raised over $230,000 (maybe more) for T1D – a massive increase on last year and a big contributor to the overall goal of raising 1.5 million from the event.

Oh and the dancing! Can’t forget the dancing. The funky band had almost everyone up and jiving. In fact, there was no room left on the dance floor so we created a new one to the side! Great times.

The Melbourne, Perth and Canberra Galas still have tickets for sale, you can get them HERE.

What is T1D? T1D is caused by the immune system mistakenly turning on itself, destroying cells within the pancreas that produce insulin. Without insulin, the body literally starves as it cannot process food. People with T1D must receive a constant supply of insulin to stay alive, as well as endure painful fingerpricks around 6-8 times a day to help keep their blood glucose levels under control.

There is no way to prevent T1D, and currently no cure.

Who is JDRF? JDRF is the leading global organisation funding type 1 diabetes (T1D) research. Their mission is to accelerate life-changing breakthroughs to cure, prevent and treat T1D and its complications.

I’ve been involved with JDRF for around three years now and love their work. They are passionate and committed to their mission. They create a wonderful community for those with T1D and their families and friends.

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