The Illinois chapter of JDRF, the leading global organization funding type 1 diabetes (T1D) research, hosts an annual gala that serves as the anchor for its yearly fundraising efforts. One key portion of the One Dream Gala is Fund A Cure, a live program that solicits donations from the audience by making a personal appeal that focuses on the story of a family affected by the disease.

In lieu of doing an in-person event in 2020, JDRF Illinois decided to host a virtual gala, which required the leadership team to figure out a way to maintain the personal feel of Fund A Cure without being able to speak directly to the audience.

Instead of highlighting one specific family, the JDRF team decided to use Show&Tell to host and screen multiple Fund A Cure videos that checked in on families they had featured in the past and shared updates as to how they are managing T1D today. Distributing these videos via email in the weeks leading up to the virtual event afforded JDRF multiple opportunities to ask for donations instead of just once during the gala.

As a result, they were able to not only save time and money on video production, but they also significantly increased the amount of funds they were able to raise. During a year in which they were expecting lower than normal donations, they actually increased their total donations to $8.5 million — up from $7.1 million the year prior.

The JDRF Illinois team plans to continue using Show&Tell to host Fund A Cure videos moving forward, and is currently in discussions with the national organization about hosting their ongoing storytelling video series on the platform.

“We thought this year would be an off year because of the Pandemic, but we ended up raising $8.5 Million and over half of that was raised with Fund A Cure.”
- Kacie Herbst, JDRF Illinois