New Funding from Helmsley Trust

sisterSTAFF Blog

New Funding from Helmsley Trust

Fall is upon us….at least it feels that way here in Durham, NC.  I had to pull out my first pair of jeans this weekend.  I am not a big fan of cold weather (let’s be honest, I detest it!), so I’m looking forward to my trip to the West Coast in October.


Quick Diabetes Story: This past week at Summer’s cheerleading practice (her first one), I had a mom lean over to me and say, “So, how long have you had diabetes?”  while pointing at my omnipod.  I smiled and said, “Most people don’t know what this is….you must have a family member with diabetes.”  She then told me about her 7-year-old daughter (who was in Summer’s cheerleading practice) who had been diagnosed with diabetes a year earlier.  We had a long conversation about diabetes and I could tell she was still in the “searching for information” phase.  She said her daughter was now starting to cry when it was time to change her site. I could also tell that she was pleased to meet a woman with diabetes who was living a normal life- being a mom and wife with a career.  It’s easy to forget how uncertain the future was for you and your parents if you were diagnosed decades ago!  After cheerleading, Summer told me that there was a girl with diabetes in her cleerleading class and when she introduced herself, she said, “My name is ____ and I have diabetes—and it’s not fun.”  When we went out to our car, I heard the mom telling the daughter that I had diabetes. As she was getting in her car (parked next to me), the girl said, “Hey! My mom said you have diabetes and so do I!” To which I replied with a big smile, “I know!  Isn’t it sooo cool when you meet another person with diabetes.”  She smiled and said, “Yeah!”


I’m excited to visit San Francisco, tour potential sites for our 2013 Conference, AND…attend the PODS Meetup in Novato, CA on Tuesday, October 9, 2012!  Every time I get a chance to visit a PODS Meetup in a different part of the country, I find it so refreshing because each group has its own personality.  When I leave from every Meetup, no matter where it is located, I feel welcomed, accepted, and re-energized!  Can you believe that we have 30 active PODS Leaders throughout the US and Canada!?!?  We are really growing!


I haven’t had a chance to share the really GREAT NEWS with you that we received at the beginning of this month: The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust has awarded a $100,000 sustainability grant to DiabetesSisters, which will be used to optimize and expand the organization’s current program infrastructure.  YAAAAY!  In addition, as a result of this grant, we also have access to nonprofit consultant for the next year.


If you have been surprised by the amount of growth DiabetesSisters has experienced over the last 4 and half years, I can only say, “You ain’t seen nothin’ yet!”  From the beginning, God has had this organization in His hands, opened up doors and created unbelievable opportunities.  Anyone who knows me, knows this is true because there is no way quiet, introverted Brandy could have done this on her own. Yet this is just another opportunity that He has created for DiabetesSisters.  I plan to make the best possible use of it so that we can continue to serve women with diabetes and reach even more women with diabetes who are in need of our Sisterhood!  To those who have been here for the long-haul (since 2008), I can only tell you to “Hold on!  It’s going to be a wild ride!”   It continues to get better and better and the organization continues to grow in more and more incredible ways!  Now certainly is a great time to be a part of the Sisterhood!


I will also be in Los Angeles in October (10th-14th).  I look forward to meeting up with my DiabetesSisters, Natalie Strand and Kyrra Richards while there.  If you are in the L.A. area and would like to meet up, post a message below or message me on Facebook.