Frequently Asked Questions
What is MAD?
Mutual Aid Diabetes is a group of diabetics dedicated to caring for the community by connecting community members in need with medication, insulin, supplies, and healthcare. We are 100% volunteer.
What is mutual aid?
Mutual aid is a way for a community to collectively care for those most marginalized and vulnerable to harm. It's an anti-capitalist response to artificial scarcity created by the state/government(s.) Mutual aid involves the voluntary exchange of resources and knowledge, without access barriers like means testing. Mutual aid groups are not charities. Instead, there's an anarchist emphasis on avoiding hierarchies that create a divide between those asking for help and those helping. By creating a mutual aid network we are building a more sustainable way for our entire community to care for those in it.
How are you funded?
We are 100% funded by no-strings-attached donations to our GoFundMe and Patreon! 100% of our GoFundMe is redistributed to diabetics in need. Most of our Patreon funds are also redistributed directly to community members in need, but some of that money is also used to cover our operating costs.
We don't have any partnerships with corporations. We will never take money from pharmaceutical, biotechnology, or health insurance companies.
With the exception of SkinGrip, a company which has donated generously to our GoFundMe on a number of occasions, most of our funding comes from individuals' small donations.
How can I financially support MAD?
You can support our cause here.
Can I send MAD unused insulin, medication, or Rx supplies?
Not exactly... first, MAD does not have an office or official place to store supplies -- we are an online network. Second, while we don't know of anyone who has gotten in legal trouble for sharing/shipping insulin, it's a legal gray area. For these reasons MAD does not accept Rx shipments at this time. If you'd like to share your extra supplies with diabetics in need, you can fill out this community organized form and someone will contact you if the supplies are needed.
Who can request aid?
Any diabetic (or non-diabetic reaching out on behalf of someone with diabetes) can request aid. There is no means testing: everyone who asks us for help is eligible to receive it. Depending on your unique circumstances we will have different options for assistance.
Where can I request aid?
You can fill out this form to request assistance from us.
What happens when someone fills out MAD's request aid form?
After filling out a request aid form, you will be contacted by a MAD Intake Specialist within 24 hours. They will contact you via text or email and try to set up a time to talk on the phone.
Depending on your unique circumstances our Intake Specialists will offer potential solutions. If for whatever reason, something an Intake Specialist suggests doesn't work for you: please tell them why so we can better meet your needs. Generally because every situation is so unique, the more information folks volunteer the better we're able to assist.
Can MAD connect me with people who share unused supplies and medication?
In the event that no other better options exist, and with your consent, our Intake Specialists can refer you to diabetics who share surplus supplies and medication in your area.
Does MAD provide direct funding for insulin and other diabetes medication?
Yes, in some circumstances when our Intake volunteers (and the community member requesting aid) come to the conclusion that there are no other feasible options we dispense direct financial aid. Because our resources are so limited, our Intake volunteers work to make sure we find the lowest possible cost (sometimes by using coupons or referring folks to a 340b clinic that provides discounted insulin) for a community member's medication. If a barrier to obtaining insulin/medication is a prescription, we can sometimes dispense funds to cover a copay or online telehealth visit to obtain a prescription.
Does MAD provide direct funding for diabetes supplies?
Based on the funds we currently have available and the requests we get: for some supplies yes, and others no...
(this list is not comprehensive)
Supplies we can provide or provide direct funding for: blood glucose meter kit, test strips, syringes, pen needles, ketone strips.
Supplies we can't always provide direct funding for depending on the circumstances: CGMs, insulin pumps, insulin pump supplies. If you're in need of these supplies please reach out to us anyway -- we will see what we can do.
Does MAD provide direct funding for community members' rent or living expenses?
For the most part, unfortunately no. Our funds are limited and so we prioritize redistributing them primarily for insulin, medication, supplies, and diabetes related costs. Community members we've worked with in the past who have ongoing needs are occasionally issued small amounts of direct aid for non-diabetes related costs on a case by case basis -- pending funds being available.
Will you share my personal payment apps, GoFundMe, or other crowd-sourcing page?
Yes! If you have a need for things like, rent, living expenses, paying off debt, or large diabetes related purchases (pumps, etc.) among other things, we are happy to share your direct payment info (venmo, cash app, paypal, etc.) and/or links to your crowd-sourcing campaigns on our website and social media. You can fill out a request aid form and indicate you'd like to have us help you crowd-fund. We cannot guarantee that your request(s) will always be filled since our reach and community are relatively small.
Can MAD help me find insurance, understand Patient Assistance Programs, or find housing?
Our Sustainability Advisors can help you figure out what insurance you're eligible for and help you apply for things like PAPs. Housing is not our expertise but we try to refer community members to local mutual aid groups and resources for housing when we can.
What happens if I need help from MAD multiple times?
There's no limit to how many times you can ask for help. But, if you need reoccurring direct funding for more than three months, we will have you meet with one of our Sustainability Advisors. Instead of having community members with ongoing needs make emergency requests every month, meeting with a Sustainability Advisor allows us to plan ahead and make sure you have funding when you need it every month.