The Junior Diabetes Research Fund (JDRF) One Walk is a fundraising event focused on finding a cure for type 1 diabetes. A 1.5-mile walk took place in New Orleans on Nov.7 at Audubon Park. The event raised $182,221.02 for Type 1 diabetes research.
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease in which a person’s pancreas loses the ability to create insulin. It can occur both in children and adults suddenly and is unrelated to diet and lifestyle. It requires constant carbohydrate counting, blood-glucose testing and lifelong dependence on injected insulin.
The event was originally called the JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes, but was changed to JDRF One Walk this past year. The reason being, JDRF wanted the name of their fundraising event to communicate their focus on a single goal. That goal is to create a world without Type 1 diabetes.
Over 50 teams were registered for the walk in New Orleans. Teams created a team name and T-shirt, and on the day of the event, participated in the event together.
“We were apart of Team Sarah. There were about 30 of us who registered to be on Sarah’s team. Type 1 diabetes is something that Sarah has to deal with every day, so it was great to spend our morning showing Sarah the support we have for her,” Karlee McKernan, participant of the JDRF One Walk, said.
Sarah Priest, the captain of Team Sarah and a junior at Southeastern Louisiana University, was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes when she was 11 years old. Every year since she has created a team full of family, childhood friends and college friends to participate in the fundraising event.
After the walk, there was food, music and entertainment for all of the attendees to enjoy.
Zea’s Rotisserie & Grill, Biscuits & Buns on Banks, Jeanfreau’s, Rocky & Carlos, Charlie’s Restaurant & Catering and Lucky Dog Hot Dogs are the restaurants that donated food to the event. At-Fault Band provided the music for attendees to enjoy and the entertainment included a maze, space walk and a face painting and tye-dye station.
“Although I love the walk, the food and social aspect afterwards is probably my favorite part. I didn’t know everyone on Sarah’s team, so it was cool getting to know everyone and find out how we all know Sarah,” Amanda Ridgell, participant of the JDRF One Walk, said.
“I always tell people that the JDRF walk is like my second birthday of the year. This is a day that I truly get to see all of the love and support I have in my life,” Sarah Priest, said.
Below is a recording of Sarah Priest discussing how she has gotten involved with the JDFR One Walk.