CWD's Friends for Life conference returned to the Disneyland Hotel for a third year, and it was another fabulous weekend for all involved! The conference, held September 16-18, 2016, drew over 350 participants largely from California, and from as far away as Spain. The weather was absolutely beautiful, and attendees large and small made the most of a good mix of educational sessions, discussion groups, shared meals, and pool and park time.
Many thanks to our wonderful presenters and discussion facilitators - your expertise is unmatched, and you have a real talent for helping families and individuals with type 1 understand the most challenging concepts. The conference featured two keynote presenters, Korey Hood and Anne Peters. Korey, a psychologist with type 1, focused Saturday morning on a question which is on many minds in his opening keynote, “A Driverless Pancreas: Are We Ready for the Ride?” Dr. Anne Peters closed the conference Sunday afternoon on an upbeat note: “Thriving with Type 1 Diabetes.” In between? Lots of information-packed sessions by Gary Scheiner, Jamie Wood, Diana Naranjo, and Jen Block.
The conference included an advocacy track on Saturday, with the topics “Your Story as a Powerful Advocacy Tool,” “Diabetes Advocacy Boot Camp,” and a roundtable discussion about access. Many thanks to Christel Marchand Aprigliano and Bennet Dunlap for pulling together these sessions, which also included Brad Slaight and Stewart Perry.
The Nightscout team joined us for several sessions on Saturday, including CGM in the Cloud: Tomorrow's Solutions Today and A Day in the Loop with Nightscout, as well as an installation workshop. Thank you Jason Adams, Jason Calabrese, Kate Farnsworth, and Wes Nordgren for sharing your rapidly-evolving expertise. These are exciting times.
On Saturday evening, we were treated to a very entertaining and engaging magic/comedy show by Nathan Phan: Magic Asian Man. Thank you, PADRE Foundation, for this wonderful evening of family fun and delicious desserts!
To the Youth Program leaders and staff - thank you for your enthusiasm, energy, and talent. Your commitment is appreciated by all. The kids had such a great time and learned so much from you and from each other. There were many FFLs made this weekend!
To our wonderful sponsors: Lilly Diabetes, Tandem Diabetes Care, Dexcom, Inc., Animas, Abbott Diabetes Care, BD, Novo Nordisk, Beta Bionics,, Insulet Corporation, American Diabetes Association, JDRF, and PADRE Foundation — thanks for continuing to believe in CWD and for supporting our mission to reach ever more families with life-changing conferences. You make a difference.
To our additional exhibitors including TrialNet, Genteel, Dario, Mini Pharmacy, NightScout, Agamatrix, and DeeDee Diabetic, thanks so much for spending the weekend with us to meet our families and share your products.
Jo Stroud and Kristen Seiz — thanks for all of your hard work with the food and beverage, including all of the carb counts, portion sizes, and attention to food allergies. Everything went like clockwork, and the food was yummy. Well done. Chef Joven – thank you for the many hours you spent on our menus with Kristen and Jo, and for being available all weekend to answer questions.
Julia Mattingly – As always, thanks for being Home Base at registration all weekend. You’re the face everyone looks for when they arrive, and you have the most welcoming smile ever.
Scott Kyllo, Chris Tull, and Jim Stroud — Great job on our first ever ‘IT provided entirely by CWD’ event.
To everyone else behind the scenes - you work so tirelessly, with the goal of a seamless conference. Most people don't know how much elbow grease goes into a weekend event. And that's the beauty of it. You have our most humble thanks. Now, it's time to get started on next year – FFL Anaheim 2017, which will be May 5-7, right back at the Disneyland Hotel!
And with that, the weekend in photos ...
FFL is full of smiles
A team from Beta Bionics was on hand to share the iLet bionic pancreas
Bennet Dunlap from DPAC spoke with families about advocacy
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