Hamilton Building Supply T1D Drive

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Last month, on November 30th,  the Hamilton Building Supply T1D Drive just celebrated the ending of their second Breakthrough T1D Your Way fundraiser for Breakthrough T1D!  Hamilton Building Supply matched every donation dollar for dollar, raising an incredible total of $48,504, almost $15,000 more than last year!  John Perna is the president and CEO of Hamilton Building Supply and he answered some of our questions as to why the company is so passionate about our mission.


  • How did the Hamilton Building Supply fundraiser begin?

As an independent building materials supplier, we were looking for ways to give back to the community, our employees and our customers.  We were searching for a cause that we wanted to draw more attention to and affected us closely.  Some of our employees and their family members are T1D’s, so aligning a donation drive with the Breakthrough T1D, during November diabetes awareness month, made a lot of sense for us.  We launched our first ever T1D/Breakthrough T1D fundraiser last year and really had no idea how effective or successful it would be.  We started by reaching out to all of our customers and vendor partners, asking them to donate.  For every dollar they donated, we donated as well.  Before we knew it, the fundraiser took off and we raised $33,897 last year and $48,294 this year.


  • What is your favorite part of your fundraiser?

The fact that we can bring customers, vendors and employees together over something more meaningful than business and building materials is really special.  Certainly we don’t lose sight of our purpose as a company, to be a great supplier of building materials for our customers, but every now and then it feels great to rally around a cause that’s bigger than ourselves and our company.


  • What makes your fundraiser unique?

The way we close out our November fundraiser is a lot of fun.  We spend all of November promoting the fundraiser and collecting donations through our Breakthrough T1D page but then the last day of the month we spend it at Killarney’s Publick House, a local bar and restaurant that is a huge supporter of the cause.  One of our employees plays in a band and we have a silent auction and raffle during the night.  A lot of our customers, employees and supporters from the community come out to join us.


  • What is your connection to Breakthrough T1D?

My 7 year old son Jace is a T1D, diagnosed when he was 5.  My mom has been a T1D for many years as well and she helped align us with Breakthrough T1D.  Since then, my family has been connected with the foundation, but we realized how many other T1D’s we were close to within our Hamilton Building Supply family.


  • How have you personally engaged with Breakthrough T1D and the type 1 diabetes community?

Our annual November fundraiser through Hamilton Building Supply is one of my closest connections.  Aside from that our family participates in the Philadelphia One Walk .


Check out Hamilton Building Supply Company’s fundraising page at https://secure3.convio.net/jdrf3/site/TR?fr_id=9410&pg=personal&px=13619733