JDRFImpact Report 2019/20

Impact Report 2019/20

We're changing the story together

Download our latest Impact Report for 2019/20

Today there are over 400,000 people in the UK living with type 1 diabetes. JDRF exists to make life better for anyone from the type 1 community. Our ultimate goal is to find a cure.

“A big highlight this year was the launch of the world’s first artificial pancreas app – a breakthrough that will transform life for many people with type 1. It is just one of many impacts made possible by your support.

The story of our impact is told in this report through the voices of people in the type 1 community. Nothing you read here would be possible without our loyal supporters and our dedicated employees – A huge thank you to every one of you. Together, we are changing people’s lives for the better, and getting ever closer to our goal: A world without type 1 diabetes.” ~ Karen Addington, Chief Executive

Here’s a snapshot of the incredible changes you’ve helped make possible this year

We supported communities

We provided 23,500 people with resources and information about managing type 1 diabetes.

Our schools e-learning module was accessed 17,500 times providing a well regarded education tool to teachers and students.

We have developed specialist toolkits to help people with type 1 at university, school and in the workplace.

Our website has had over 1 million visits in the past year.

We campaigned for treatments and technologies

Former prime minister The Right Honourable Theresa May, MP, became a JDRF ambassador to champion our Connect Immune Research Initiative, which has the potential to transform 4 million lives in the UK.

Parliament welcomed our new Pathway to Choice report, paving the way for more people to be able to access and choose life-changing type 1 medical devices.

We arranged to meet with government and pharmaceutical companies to reassure the type 1 community that insulin and other vital medical products will still be available if there’s a no-deal Brexit.

Five times as many people with type 1 now have a flash glucose monitor through the NHS, thanks to our campaigning to ensure access was not decided by postcode lottery.

Our research persuaded the NHS to provide continuous glucose monitors for ALL pregnant women with type 1, improving lives for thousands of mothers and babies in England and Wales.

11 children with type 1 did a brilliant job of representing JDRF at a special reception at 10 Downing Street to help raise awareness of type 1 diabetes.

We maximised our research

JDRF paid over £2.5 million to UK research projects – the most we’ve ever been able to support.

We get the most out of every research pound we spend. Unlike many other charities, we have one expert team managing our entire global research programme, so we don’t duplicate efforts in different countries.

JDRF UK is part of six nations, all funding type 1 diabetes research across 20 countries worldwide.

JDRF supported the launching of the UK’s first artificial pancreas app.

We navigated some tough times

Although our in person events could not go ahead as planned, we’ve adapted our approach and we’re working hard to ensure fundraising can still continue virtually. With you by our side, we can succeed.

Although we weren’t able to raise money through the London Marathon this year – our biggest fundraiser – that didn’t stop you fundraising. Our virtual events have so far raised over £135,000.

We hosted three virtual Quiz to Cure evenings, with Sky Sports presenter Adam Smith, providing entertainment and fun for the family as well as raising £13,600.

We have provided virtual support events to ensure the community has a place to meet and share reassurance during tough times.

So far we have held three virtual Discovery Days providing information and advice to 794 people achieving a phenomenal 95% positive feedback.

Two virtual Fusion events have explained the use of technology in managing type 1.

Life-changing diabetes tech for Daniel


Daniel was diagnosed with diabetes at 10 years old. “I remember the doctor telling me I had type 1 diabetes but being 10 years old I didn’t understand what it meant at the time”.

Daniel had an up and down journey with his diagnosis “I particularly struggled during my teenage years and my early twenties. I experienced diabetes distress and diabetes burnout during this time. I didn’t know about the great work that JDRF had been doing until I applied for an HR Officer job there! Since then JDRF has helped me to learn so much more about type 1, including understanding diabetes technology and the positive impact that it can have on my diabetes management. It has changed my life”.

Since learning about the benefits of tech, Daniel has been fortunate enough to receive funding for an insulin pump and Freestyle Libre, which has made daily life much easier. “JDRF has welcomed me into the type 1 community. I enjoy attending events, meeting supporters and hearing about others’ experiences, it has helped me to feel less alone. I now even host my own blog and podcast about life with type 1 diabetes!”

JDRF’s support and information helps people improve their management of type 1 and make daily life a bit easier.

“JDRF has welcomed me into the type 1 community – it has been an amazing support system.” ~ Daniel

A world-first for Daniel W

Daniel and his mum

The world’s first artificial pancreas app, CamAPS FX, launched in March 2020. Daniel was one of the first to experience its game-changing impact when he participated in JDRF-funded trials. He tells his story:

“When I first heard about the artificial pancreas trial, I was very excited to be taking part in research that would change history. With my type 1 diabetes, if my blood sugar is low, I need to have sugar to bring it back to a safe level. If my blood goes high, I need insulin. This isn’t nice when you’re asleep. Sometimes, my mum has to wake me up lots of times in the night and I’m very tired at school. For the trial, I had a new artificial pancreas app to sort out how much insulin I was given automatically while I slept. Mum was really worried about relying on it at first, but it worked brilliantly. The trial really helped me at school because it meant I was less tired and could concentrate on my studies.”

The artificial pancreas transformed Daniel’s life and will transform many more, thanks to research funded by your support.

“The trial really helped me at school because it meant I was less tired and could concentrate on my studies.” ~ Daniel

Laura Mueller is on the trail of a cure

Laura Mueller

“We were so shocked to discover my younger sister had type 1. We’re a very close family and her diagnosis had a big impact on all of us and was very distressing for her. I’d always wanted to be a medical researcher and my sister’s condition inspired me to help find a way to cure it.”

“With the support of JDRF, I’ve been working with Dr Francesca Spagnoli on a JDRF funded project to explore ways to replace lost beta cells in people with type 1. This would restore people’s ability to produce insulin and process glucose automatically. By growing new beta cells from human skin cells, the body is less likely to reject them. Combined with a treatment to stop the autoimmune attack on the new beta cells, this work could lead us to a cure. I’ve seen how much my sister has already benefited from type 1 research. I’m excited about what we may discover and so grateful to the people who help make it happen.”

Thanks to you, we fund promising young researchers with a passion to find the answers.

“I’d always wanted to be a medical researcher and my sister’s condition inspired me to help find a way to cure it.” ~ Laura

Professor Colin Dayan will change how the immune system works

Professor Colin Dayan

“Type 1 is one of the few major autoimmune diseases without a licensed immunotherapy and I want to change that. I’m determined to find a solution that will effectively ‘retrain’ the immune system to stop attacking insulin producing beta cells in the pancreas.”

“It’s a slow process but very important. JDRF is patient with the challenges of clinical research and willing to support new ideas that other funders might not consider. JDRF is very committed to achieving an outcome and this approach – combined with a growing global network of research partners – gives scientists like me the chance to achieve ground-breaking research. This can help treat type 1 today and find ways to cure and prevent it in years to come.”

JDRF is funding groundbreaking work on immunotherapies to help prevent and cure type 1.

“Type 1 is almost the only major autoimmune disease without a licensed immunotherapy and I wanted to change that.” ~ Professor Colin Dayan

Thank you for making it all possible.

Rufus the bear with two JDRF supporters

With special thanks to Steve and Sally Morgan of The Steve Morgan Foundation

Our Accelerator Programme Philanthropists:

  • Dominic Christian and Kate Birch
  • The Edwards Family
  • Rosemary, Gordon and Cameron Fuller
  • The Gillespie Family Trust
  • Susan Hampshire, Sir Eddie Kulukundis, and The Antares Trust
  • Wilson Leech
  • Timothy and Susie Lintott
  • The Manktelow Family
  • The Rt. Hon. Theresa May
  • The Pardoe Family


  • Abbott Diabetes Care UK
  • Dexcom UK Distribution Ltd
  • Insulet International Ltd
  • Roche Diabetes Care UK
  • Lilly UK
  • Novo Nordisk Ltd
  • Sanofi UK
  • Air Liquide Healthcare Ltd
  • Medtronic Ltd
  • Medtrum Ltd
  • ViCentra Ltd
  • Ypsomed Ltd
  • Dextro Energy GmbH
  • The Syncona Foundation
  • Next PLC
  • Ford Motor Company Ltd
  • Mudano Ltd
  • Hayes Collins Media Ltd


  • The Alan and Babette
  • Sainsbury Charitable Fund
  • AMW Charitable Trust
  • Bernard Sunley Foundation
  • The Cadogan Charity
  • The Charles Wolfson Charitable Trust
  • The Edward Gostling Foundation
  • The Elizabeth and Prince Zaiger Trust
  • Garfield Weston Foundation
  • The Henry Lumley Charitable Trust
  • John Swire 1989 Charitable Trust
  • Martin Laing Foundation
  • The Mason Le Page Charitable Trust
  • The Steve Morgan Foundation

And all our Patrons for their generous investment in the work of JDRF.

Download the full Impact Report for 2019/20