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Friends for Life Logo

Friends for Life Conference and Expo
July 11 - 15, 2007
Disney's Coronado Springs Resort
Lake Buena Vista, Florida

Bring your whole family for the time of your life

Spend time at the Quilt for Life

Have fun with Intissar and Laura

Join in the Fun Run ... once around the lake

Teen's have their own programming--and the Teen Dance

Even parents enjoy dancing after the Banquet

Join your friends for a day at the Magic Kingdom

Meet your old -- and make new -- friends for life

Learn from world class experts like Dr. David Harlan from the NIDDK ...

... and Dr. Irl Hirsh

Grandparents learn from Betty Brackenridge and ...

... siblings get attention from Richard Rubin

Learn about the latest in diabetes care products in our Exhibit Hall

Participate in a Focus Group on Wednesday


After attending CWD conferences several years, one could think there's nothing more to see or to learn. Yes there is! There is the possibility of helping others, the most healing act we've found during our diabetes experience. There is the possibility of receiving: receiving solidarity, receiving advice, receiving expressions of friendship. There is the possibility of making new friends and strengthening old friendships. There is the possibility of learning some geography and laughing at oneself: We learned that whenever you read King of Prussia on a tag, there is no need to make a bow, or call the person "Your Majesty." It's enough saying "Nice to meet you!"
--The Escobars about Friends for Life 2006

Children with Diabetes presents our 8th annual family conference! Join world-renowned clinicians, researchers, physicians, adults, children, and families with diabetes to learn the most current information in diabetes care. Attend educational sessions and get cutting-edge ideas for your family's diabetes management. Participate in parent discussion groups and find new, creative ways to help and motivate your children. Watch toddlers and teens, young parents and grandparents, new diabetes professionals and practiced clinicians make new and lifelong friendships. This is a conference you won't ever forget!

Who Should Attend the 2007 Event?

  • Families and individuals with type 1 diabetes
  • Young adults, teens, school-age children, and younger children
  • Kids with type 1 diabetes and their siblings and their best buddies
  • Their parents
  • Adults with type 1 diabetes and their spouses or partners
  • Health care professionals who work with type 1 diabetes

The Conference Venue and Reservations

Disney's Coronado Springs Resort is the newest Walt Disney World® Conference facility and is located near Magic Kingdom® Park, Epcot®, Disney-MGM Studios, and Disney's Animal Kingdom® Theme Park. Five swimming pools are on the Hotel grounds, including a huge, feature-pool complex with southwestern theme. A children's playground is on site, as is a large game arcade and fitness center. Watercraft and bike rentals are offered. A jogging trail winds around the 15-acre lake. Complimentary Disney bus transportation is available between the Hotel and all Disney Theme Parks.

Hotel rooms include 2 double beds or a king bed, refrigerator, high speed internet (fee for service), ceiling fan, coffee maker, wall safe, telephone with voice mail and data port. Wireless high speed internet is available in public areas of the hotel, including the lobby, conference center, and swimming pool.

Room rates are $141 + tax. This rate is available from July 5, 2007 to July 16, 2007 for those families who might want to extend their vacation. Note that at this time (January 2007), the Coronado Springs Resort is sold out on July 17. So, if you wish to extend your vacation, you may wish to do so on the front end of the conference.

Corporate Suites may be reserved for hospitality events or entertaining.

For housing reservations, you must call Disney directly at 407-939-1020. Be sure to say you are with the Children with Diabetes conference. The Children with Diabetes room block is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Please note that you are only in the CWD room block and only have the perks of being in the room block if you make reservations through this phone number (i.e., not through the Disney 800 number, through the website, or through a travel agent they cannot access the CWD rooms). If you make hotel reservations any other way, you will not be included in the CWD room block.

Disney offers free transportation from the Orlando Internation Airport to Disney's Coronado Springs Resort via Disney's Magical Express. After reserving your hotel room, visit the Disney's Magical Express web site to reserve your transportation. They'll even drop your luggage right in your room! Please note "Children with Diabetes" in the "Group" field on the reservation form.

You can view the floor plan for the conference center.

For additional conference information, contact Laura Billetdeaux at 734-428-8265 (eastern time) or email

Disney Theme Park Tickets Specially priced Disney Theme Park tickets are available for Friends for Life conference attendees. Order online before July 6, 2007.

The Conference Schedule

Beginning with Focus Groups and the Grand Opening Reception on Wednesday through the Farewell Breakfast on Sunday morning, Friends for Life will keep everyone busy. Schedule information can be found at:

Social Events

Friends for Life is as much about connecting and sharing as it is about learning, and we have many social events planned for all age groups. From special receptions to the Fun Run to the Family and Friends Banquet to various dances and parties, you're sure to have a great time. See the Social Activities page for more information.

Try an Insulin Pump!

Come to the conference and try a pump! Pump companies Animas, Disetronic, Insulet, Medtronic Diabetes, and Smiths Medical offer would-be pumpers a chance to try their products using saline. A prescription from your physician is required and must include the wording "insulin pump trial with saline." If you plan to try more than one pump, be sure to bring a prescription for each.

This opportunity is by appointment only. Appointments will fill up quickly. For more information, contact:

  • Animas
    Val Valentino at 1-877-YES PUMP x1225 or

  • Disetronic Medical Systems Inc/Roche Diagnostics
    Terri Richert at 317-570-5268 or

  • Medtronic Diabetes
    Julie Sweidan at 1-800-999-9859 x4514 or

  • OmniPod Insulin Management System
    Janet Tedeschi 1-781-457-4804 or

  • Smiths Medical
    Mikelyn Calhoun at 651-628-7476 or

View the Quilt for Life

Quilt Photo
Quilt Photo

Quilt Logo

Birthdate. Diagnosis date. Pumping date. 3 am blood sugar checks. Wishing for a cure. Smiles. Lots of smiles. All are in the Quilt for Life, part of Children with Diabetes. For many, diabetes is about numbers. For us, diabetes is about Marissa and Sam and Lori and Justin and the tens of thousands of other children with diabetes. In the Quilt for Life, diabetes is transformed from the impersonal to the personal, from the abstract world of numbers to the real world of children living everyday with finger sticks and insulin injections. In the Quilt for Life, we all see the wonder of our kids and we rededicate ourselves to finding a cure for type 1 diabetes.

The Quilt for Life will be on Display in the Exhibit Hall from Wednesday evening through Friday afternoon, during the open hours of the Exhibit Hall. Please make sure to stop by and see it. If you don't have a quilt square made yet in honor of your child, there is still time to make your own! Quilt squares submitted by July 1 will be on display with the entire quilt at Friends for Life!

TrialNet Screening

Help us as we work toward a cure. Moms, dads, sisters, & brothers can be screened for type 1 diabetes through TrialNet's Natural History Study. Screening may indicate eligibility to participate in a study to see if Oral Insulin can prevent or delay the onset of diabetes. Nurses and research staff will be available during the Conference:

  • Wednesday, July 11th: Noon to 8:00 p.m.
  • Thursday, July 12th: 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. & 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
  • Friday, July 13th: 9:00 a.m. to Noon
Call now for more information or to schedule an appointment- 800-749-7424 Ext. 334-0857, or 352-334-1358. During the Conference, drop by Room Sonora B in the Veracruz Corridor across from the Exhibit Hall and Sports Central. And visit us at the TrialNet Booth #425.

Sports Central

Sports Central is an area in the Convention Center dedicated to sports and active fun with the kids and families. There will be several basketball and volleyball courts, an area for martial arts, and an area for games, aerobics, moving to music, and other activities. Sports Central will be open on Wednesday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. for Open Gym (volleyball and basketball), on Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. for scheduled activities with the various kids age groups (please see their program schedules for details), and on Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. for scheduled kids' activities, and from 8:00 p.m. to midnight for open gym.

Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult. Individuals with diabetes must have a blood glucose meter, insulin, and a source of glucose with them (we will have emergency supplies on hand, but you should bring your own). Appropriate clothing and footwear is required.

Many thanks to Novo Nordisk for their generous sponsorship of Sports Central at Friends for Life!

2007 CWD Friend for Life Award Recipients

Sam Billetdeaux
The Inspiration for CWD Conferences And for Children with Diabetes Everywhere
Richard Rubin, Ph.D., C.D.E.
For a Career Dedicated to Helping Families with Diabetes Live Healthier, Happier Lives, and for his Special Devotion to CWD

Cancellation Policy

You may cancel your conference registration with CWD until June 11, 2007 and receive a full refund minus a $50 processing fee. After June 11, we are unable to provide a refund. Hotel room cancellation is subject to the rules of the resort.

For More Information

For additional information regarding the Friends for Life conference, please contact Laura Billetdeaux via email () or by phone during business hours eastern time, Monday - Friday, 734-428-8265.

Scholarship Information

Family scholarships to Friends for Life are offered by the Education for Children with Diabetes Foundation.

Important Notice for Email Users

Yahoo is refusing to accept email from the Children with Diabetes mail server and as a result you are not receving important updates about the conference. Please find a new email provider and contact Laura Billetdeaux at with that information.

Chris Dudley Basketball Clinic is a Slam Dunk

Chris Dudley at Camp
Kids, join Chris Dudley for a one-day Basketball Clinic on Tuesday, July 10. To register see the Basketball Clinic Program or visit the Chris Dudley web site to learn more and fill out the application form. You must be registered for the conference in order to participate in the camp. Limited to the first 60 kids to register.

Special Guest
Nicole Johnson

Photo of Nicole Johnson Nicole Johnson, Miss America 1999 and international diabetes advocate, will speak at the Family and Friends banquet, be involved with sessions for parents and kids, and will present "Pregnancy and Diabetes" with Dr. Fran Kaufman.

Special Guest
George Canyon

George Canyon
Country music star George Canyon and his family will join us for the conference, and George will perform at the Family and Friends Banquet on Thursday evening.

Special Guest
Kevin Covais

Photo of Kevin Covais Join Kevin Covais (from American Idol) as he performs for the CWD kids and families at the Family and Friends Banquet, Thursday evening, sponsored by LifeScan and Novo Nordisk.

Special Guest
Jay Leeuwenburg

Jay Leeuwenburg started more than 120 NFL games, played all five interior offensive line positions, and lined up against Hall of Famers during a nine-year NFL career. "Diabetes has not prevented me from enjoying a full and exciting life," he says, "and it doesn't have to limit you." Jay will be working with the kids in Sports Central.

Special Guest
Doug Burns

Doug Burns has won Mr. USA, Mr. California and Mr. Southern States. He is the winner of Six Powerlifting Championships and an American Record holding strength athlete but he's also struggled with diabetes since age seven.

Special Guest
Phil Southerland

Phil Southerland is the founder and president of Team Type 1, a cycling team of 8 riders with Type 1 diabetes that won the Race Across America. Another objective is to show people with diabetes that their condition won't hold them back.

Special Guest
Monique Hanley

Monique Hanley is a team member of Team Type 1, an all-type 1 diabetic team competing in the 2007 Race Across America who will attempt to set a new record in their category.

Special Guest
Jen Alexander

Jen Alexander
Jen Alexander was diagnosed when she was 13 years old and attempted to become the 18th Canadian to swim the English Channel. This year, Jen will swim from Prince Edward Island to New Brunswick -- and then back!

Special Guest
Missy Foy

Missy Foy
Missy Foy is an accomplished distance runner and, in 2000, she became the first diabetic athlete in history to qualify for Olympic Marathon Trials.

  Friends for Life 2007 Conference and Expo  
  Conference Intro - Faculty - Youth Faculty - Special Guests  
  Program Overview - Parents & Adults Program - Youth Program  
  Social Events - Focus Groups - Sports Central - Fun Run Pledge Sheet  
  Registration - FAQs - Sponsors - Exhibitors - Map of Attendees - Convention Center  
  Childcare Registration: Word - PDF  
  FFL Reports from 2006 - 2005 - 2004 - 2003 - 2002 - 2001  

  Back to Activities Return to the Top of This Page

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