Wherever I go in the world, I feel a special bond with other people in the Type 1 Diabetes community. The connection is especially strong with other diabetes parents, but I feel it with other members of the community as well.
No matter where we are from, what our education, background, race, religion, or nationality, we share a secret. We know what type 1 diabetes is; we know how hard it is to live with; and we know that few people outside our small community have a clue.
The global type 1 diabetes community is like a family, and we should help each other whenever possible.
If you feel the same way, visit the website of Life for a Child (www.idf.org/lifeforachild). The group is based in Australia, but is a program of the Brussels-based International Diabetes Federation.
Life for a Child helps over 10,000 children and youth with type 1 diabetes in developing countries; it gives them insulin and syringes, and in some cases, is even able to supply kids with two blood glucose test strips per day, glucometers, lancets, and a handful of HbA1c tests.
Check out their website, and look at the films they’ve made about their work in Congo and Nepal, among others. Hopefully, you’ll be moved to sign up as an annual donor; Life for a Child estimates that there are another 80-100,000 children and youth in the world who need help with their most basic diabetes needs.
Wouldn’t it be great if the global T1D community could stand together as one, and offer these kids our support? After all, we know better than anyone what it means to have diabetes, or to care for a child with type 1 diabetes. We are the only people in the world who can truly imagine what it means not to have enough money for insulin, syringes, or blood glucose test strips.
We are all in the same boat, but only some of us have oars. Those of us with the good fortune to have been born in countries with functioning healthcare systems should help the others out.