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Forbes Picks 5 All-Star Charities, Essay Example

Pages: 4

Words: 981

Essay

JDRF is a non-for-profit organization that has been established to eliminate type 1 diabetes, also known as juvenile diabetes. Despite the fact that this disease is associated with the word “juvenile”, it has potential to impact children and adults alike. As such, the name of the organization was originally “Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation”, before JDRF was adopted for primary use after consideration of the fact that adults are commonly plagued by this disorder as well. Furthermore, the disease does not discriminate according to race, religion, or socioeconomic status.

The organization intends to help facilitate the decrease in prevalence of type 1 diabetes across the world. Specifically, the organization intends to do so in a manner that allows for the funding of scientific resources, establishment of policy influence, and a “working plan to better treat, prevent, and eventually cure T1D” (JDRF.org, n.d.). While many research organizations have been criticized for failing to use raised funds to directly achieve the goals of the organization, JDRF has been successful in its endeavor to donate 80 cents to its cause for every dollar donated. Due to the need of the organization to have an international reach, the charity has offices in New York City, Australia, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Israel, Mexico, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom.

The operations of JDRF are currently considered to be large scale, but the organization began on a more local level in Philadelphia in 1970. The original organization was headed by Lee Ducat and a group of several parents who had children with type 1 diabetes. The goal of this small group was to raise funds for research that would help foster more effective medical treatments, allow more knowledge regarding the mechanism of the disease to be acquired, and to eventually find a cure. JDRF was successful during its pilot period and quickly expanded to other cities in the United States such as Miami, Florida. About 50 years after the organization’s inception, $530 million is being spent to fund scientific research in 17 different countries (Brown, 2012). There are many different projects that are currently being funded by the organization, including the development of an artificial pancreas system and therapies for individuals who develop eye disease related to type 1 diabetes.

This organization is critical to the overall health system in the United States due to the lack of funding that is currently being provided to type 1 diabetes researchers within the country from other sources. The previous federal budget was approved in a manner that provided for significant cuts in government funding for medical and basic science research. As a consequences, both private research institutions and academics have become increasingly dependent upon the smaller scale research grants provided by the JDRF. The money provided to these research organization have directly contributed to the ability of a variety of laboratories to fund research in terms of the materials and labor needed to achieve project goals.

The JDRF project that has attracted the highest degree of publicity is the artificial pancreas project. Since in type 1 diabetes, the body is unable to produce insulin in the pancreas, the creation of an artificial pancreas will allow this error to be rectified. This will contribute to an increase in the quality of life of current type 1 diabetes patients because they will need to measure their blood sugar at lower frequencies and be able to avoid painful insulin injections. The artificial pancreas is being designed in the form of a computer program that will regulate the release of insulin in patients. It incorporates the use of continuous glucose monitors so that detection of blood sugar levels is constant and so that insulin could be delivered the moment it is needed by the body. Currently JDRF is collaborating with the Food and Drug Administration to determine if this device can be approved to enter the health care market around the world.

Since the organization relies on funds from donors, it would be benefitted by reaching a broader donor base. The most well-known fundraising endeavors established by this organization are “The Walk to Cure Diabetes” and “The Ride to Cure Diabetes”. Walks are held in over 200 locations across the United States. To increase the amount of walks that occur each year, the organization could develop educational programs regarding the disease for school age students and promote smaller scale walks in elementary, middle, and high schools. Allowing the youth to become involved in this fundraising practice will help further the message of JDRF and to ensure that children with the disease have the support and understanding of their peers, which will in turn increase the quality of life for these individuals.

To further increase the prevalence of JDRF, the organization should partner with colleges and universities to establish local chapters. This will allow students to become involved in the fundraising aspect of the organization, and campus events could be held effectively to increase overall awareness of the disease and to raise funds. Other charities in the United States, such as the American Cancer Society, have established such practices and it would therefore be profitable to mimic these already established methods of fundraising in order to ensure increased levels of success.

In conclusion, JDRF is one of the main organizations that contribute funds to researchers who have initiated products in the field of type 1 diabetes. This has had a positive impact on the health care system in the United States in the wake of decreased scientific funding by the federal government. Despite the widespread influence of the organization, it would benefit by establishing partnerships with youth groups to increase the disease related education it provides and to enhance fundraising. If JDRF follows the aforementioned advice, it is likely that it will continue to grow and increase in influence in the future.

References

Brown A. (2012). Forbes Picks 5 All-Star Charities: Top Rankings For Efficient Groups. Retrieved from http://www.forbes.com/sites/abrambrown/2012/11/08/charity-all-stars

JDRF. (n.d.). About JDRF. Retrieved from http://jdrf.org/about-jdrf/

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