Back to Conferences Report from Friends for Life UK 2015

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Sunshine, warm breezes, outdoor strolls and conversation… Summertime? Nope! Friends for Life UK, Halloween weekend at the Beaumont House in Windsor! What a nice surprise it was – for all age groups – to spend Friday evening and Saturday enjoying some lovely outdoor time in between sessions and during group breaks. Sunday? Well, back to typical November – and we were all glad for the indoors. This year’s FFL event was once again held at the Beaumont House in Windsor, and 350 participants from across the UK joined us for a weekend of information, support, and friendship.

Friends for Life 2015 featured three keynote presenters, all of whom are CWD and FFL favorites: Joe Solowiejczyk, Fiona Campbell, and Jeff Hitchcock. Presenters Peter Hindmarsh, Gary Scheiner, Jill Weissberg-Benchell, Katharine Barnard, Lesley Jordan, and Vincent Crabtree additionally offered a wide range of topics for those new to diabetes management, and those who have been at it a long time and are looking for new and cutting-edge ideas. There were also numerous discussion groups: Scott Kyllo and Ashley Head led the Dads Discussion, while Jackie Jacombs and Adrienne Burton led the Mums Discussion. Joe Solowiejczyk facilitated discussion with both the Grandparents and Single Parents groups. The Nightscout team joined us for two sessions on Sunday, including an installation workshop.

The Youth Program at this conference was full of energy and enthusiasm – and so many children participated! Everyone thoroughly enjoyed Saturday activities on site, including Sports Central time outdoors and Harold time indoors. Thanks Terry Jacombs, David Sutherland, Ashley Head, and Harold Sanco for coordinating all of the group sports activities. On Sunday, the teens headed off to Thorpe Park for a fun day offsite with their teen leaders. Alanna Landry and Ashley Head coordinated the logistics, and the day was a resounding success. To the leaders and staff of all of the age groups - thank you for your talent and elbow grease. Your commitment is appreciated by all. The kids had such a great time and learned so much!

To our wonderful sponsors: Dexcom, Inc., Animas UK, Novo Nordisk, and Diabetes UK -- 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. We’re so glad you were with us for the weekend.

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. Despite all of the last minute challenges, you guys got it all done, and did a great job. J

ulia Mattingly, Gwen Sutherland and Scott Kyllo – thanks for keeping everything at registration and in sessions running smoothly! Ashley Head – thanks so much for coordinating the exhibitors and sponsor areas! And also for planning the awesome Halloween party on Saturday night!

To everyone else behind the scenes - you work so tirelessly, with the goal of a seamless conference. Most people don't know how much detailed work and energy goes into a weekend event. And that's the beauty of it. You have our most humble thanks.


Jo and Kristen worked hard on the conference food

Thanks to CWD siblings who participate in TrialNet

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