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Community News: Type 1 Diabetes Awareness

Help raise awareness and find a cure for Type 1 Diabetes

Matthew Brand, 15, has been a Velocity member since May 2011. Three months before he joined, he was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. Since then, Matthew has been promoting awareness for this disease in order to give people more knowledge, create funding for better treatment options and to ultimately find a cure.

Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease, in which the pancreas ceases to produce insulin, a hormone necessary for the regulation of glucose (sugar) in the blood and also for personal physical development. It is often mistaken for Type 2 Diabetes, which is the most common form of diabetes and occurs due to old-age or poor health and lifestyle.

Matthew explains, “After initially being misdiagnosed just before Christmas in 2010, I was finally taken to the Royal Children’s Hospital two months later with the classic diabetes symptoms (extreme thirst, loss of weight, excessive urination), and within 30 minutes I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. From the moment of diagnosis my life changed. I spent a week in hospital, give myself four injections a day, and suffer from anxiety. Whilst I have personally not been effected by this, I know many Type 1 Diabetics have body image disorders and also that the cost of diabetes puts a huge financial strain on family’s. I also have experienced the well-meaning but misguided comment most type 1 diabetics dread hearing, ‘but you’re not fat!’ This repeated comment has led me to one conclusion, there is just not enough education out there for people fortunate enough to not be effected by diabetes. The UN has called diabetes a crisis, and it doesn’t just affect the people living with diabetes, but also the people who help subsidise the vital medication in order for people like me to stay alive, in other words, you.”

In Australia,

  • 122,300+ are living with Type 1 Diabetes in Australia.
  • Every year an additional 1825+ people are diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes in Australia.
  • This rate is increasing by 3.2% every year, most of whom are under 15.

In order to raise awareness for Type 1 Diabetes, and possibly even find a cure, we need your help and generosity. You can donate to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation as well as the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute.