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JDRF Woes

2013 October 29

I have expressed my disgust in the past about my local JDRF chapter.  I used to have a great relationship with them in the past.  They would allow me to attend events that cost money, they would send me personal emails about events that they had upcoming and things were great.  Here’s the kicker, I worked for a local diabetes supply company at the time who was donating money for different walks and events.

JDRF walk to cure diabetes

After not being at the company, the relationship began to dissolve.  I was no longer receiving as many emails or invites to things.  I was denied to speak about the DOC and hand out Diabetes Advocates information.  Heck, I wasn’t even allowed to get votes from them for my Diabetes Heroes video.  Yet, they were constantly requesting money and things from me with their newsletters.

I have always loved JDRF because I love the things they are doing.  I love giving back to the kids and giving kids hope is great, so I always enjoyed attending JDRF events that were focused on kids.  I give them credit for attempting some sort of adult functions, but they occur once in a blue moon and the ones that are more frequent are like $50 tickets per person to get in.  Which means, that I will be attending with my wife and we will need to drop $100 every time we want to go to a JDRF function.  I’m sorry, but I’m not loaded with that kind of money.  Let’s also not forget that CSI Marketing Solutions (company I own) has donated plenty of money to them over the last 3 years, but that doesn’t matter come ticket time.

I see that somebody who previously lived in my area, now lives elsewhere (I’m not naming names, because I don’t know if they want names to be named), and they are having a completely different experience with their local JDRF.  This tells me that it’s not JDRF who has the problem, it’s my local chapter. But, I don’t know how far up the chain it goes.  Some of the day to day people in the chapter have always been great to me, but the directors seem to be the ones that put the hammer down on any sort of ideas that I’ve had in the past.

I am almost to the point that I want to begin supporting the local JDRF chapter in Pennsylvania where I am originally from.

How many others have frustrations like mine with their local JDRF chapter?

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  1. October 29, 2013

    Chris, I am of the opinion that the notion of JDRF chapters served its purpose when the organization began, and that’s the only reason they still exist. Over the years, I have moved around and found not every chapter was the same. Some were true to the original intent, while others were like little dynasties. However, I was personally offended by the JDRF NYC (specifically the Manhattan chapter) a few years ago (she was a bitch who felt that adults had no place in the organization other than to serve the needs of children and the chapter was a social outlet for parents). I ended up taking my fundraising to the Long Island (NY) Chapter instead, and I told the then-President that was what I would be doing and said she could take a long walk off a short pier. The bottom line is that I have very mixed feelings about chapters. They served a purpose in the very beginning, and that purpose these days is primarily to organize walks. But the leadership nationally has come up thru the chapters and still does to a large extent, although the CEO acknowledges that isn’t as relevant as it once was, there’s no desire to mess with the organization. My suggestion is to send your donations to a chapter you like better and tell the local chapter what you’ve done. The money will be appreciated by whichever chapter receives it.

  2. November 3, 2013

    Lately, I’ve been more involved with a chapter that’s not my own (ironically, it’s the same NYC chapter that Scott S criticized above; they’ve lately undertaken an effort to cater to adults with T1D, perhaps a direct result of Scott’s experience). My local chapter just doesn’t seem to have quite as much to offer – or more accurately – the same amount of people to become involved. Also, the smaller organization means that, administratively, they are limited in what they can do. And on top of that, the geography that defines my local chapter is a bit awkward (long and narrow), and I feel I have more of a connection with people in neighboring chapters than my own. I think they’d do well to merge a couple of the chapters.

    But yes, they are all different — though they are, understandably, all nonprofits and their resources and limited, especially relative to their size.

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