National Volunteer Week is April 16-22! During National Volunteer Week we celebrate our volunteers, the progress that they’ve made, and the progress that is to come. Their dedicated support and perseverance is moving us closer to a world without type 1 diabetes (T1D) and, for that, we are endlessly grateful. We are proud to partner alongside of our volunteers to move Forward as 1 to accelerate life-changing breakthroughs. From all of us at the Western and Central Pennsylvania Chapter, thank you to our volunteers for inspiring the T1D community to continue fighting for prevention, treatment, and, ultimately, a cure for T1D.
This week, we want to recognize our 2023 volunteer award recipients. These individuals are moving JDRF’s mission and vision forward through their relentless dedication and passion. We are proud to recognize our 2023 Community Volunteer Award Honorees, Jodi Palamides and Michael Salvo, for their noteworthy contributions to our chapter.
Michael leads by example, actively serving as The Central PA Board President, a strategic thought partner on the Chapter Executive Council, and is the leader for our Ride Program at the chapter. He attends every single community outreach event and was front and center at our first in-person walk since 2019. Just within this past year, he has organized a Family fun ride for the T1D Community, spoke to civic clubs, opened doors to corporate partners, organized volunteers, and helped steward our biggest supporters. He gives personally to Fund a Cure, secures sponsorship from his company and other corporate partners, and asks others in our community to support JDRF in meaningful ways. He is motivated by his son, Christopher, and the many others in our chapter who live with T1D. His passion, empathy, and drive to cure T1D over the past 12+ years is contagious and inspiring!
“I volunteer at JDRF because our son, Christopher, who lives with T1D. I remember so vividly the details of that day we received a phone call from his pediatrician informing us Christopher has type one diabetes and “the emergency room is expecting him, now!”. Fear, anxiety, tears, and faith set in. Our family worked to understand everything about this disease ensuring Christopher had the support he needed to live his best possible life. Over the years, we have found that JDRF is the one organization we trust the most in the fight to end T1D. We volunteer to make a difference for Christopher and all families struggling through this diagnosis and to ultimately find cures.”
– Michael Salvo
Jodi has been dedicated to the success of JDRF and the Western and Central PA Chapter in every way possible for well over 15 years. This year, Jodi serves as a Co-Chair for our Gala Host Committee and is a constant source of support, calm, and inspiration at each monthly meeting as well as during her diligent time working in the office. Jodi’s support doesn’t end at Gala. Her monetary and moral support are both very prevalent when it comes to her son, Jay. He is her reason! At Walk, Gala Wine Procurement, and Fund A Cure, Jodi shows her passion for support and commitment to making a difference. She inspires her fellow Gala Host Committee members by showing her willingness to personally give her time and treasure. Jodi is great at seeing a challenge and working through it with new ideas and an ability to see it differently until there is a solution. Jodi is an encouraging and understanding leader who can guide the people she is working with to reach the goals of JDRF.
“I volunteer at JDRF because…I don’t have T1D! My son does, though, and this is my way of aligning and supporting him and the many others who are challenged with this life-altering disease. Our family has a spirit for giving, and we are privileged to do so with both our time and our donations. We see the annual Gala as a way to “celebrate” another year of having successfully challenged T1D and to contribute to JDRF’s mission of accelerating life-changing breakthroughs to cure, prevent, and treat T1D. Our JDRF colleagues and friends are now like family…and we are all there for one other.”
– Jodi Palamides
Jodi and Michael, you have left an indelible mark on our chapter and local community. Thank you for selflessly giving of your time and talent to advance our shared mission! We are deeply grateful for the Western and Central Pennsylvania Chapter volunteers and their unfailing resolve to create a world without T1D. Now is an unprecedented time of progress in T1D research and it’s all because of you! This week we celebrate you and your many accomplishments!
Interested in getting involved with the JDRF Western and Central Pennsylvania Chapter? Sign up to be a volunteer!