Asha leads the way, with Mrs Lisa Neil, Mrs Rosie Parisi, and Asha’s mum, Fiona Bryson.
On Sunday November 2, at 7th Brigade Park Chermside, Asha, aged 4, her family, and her teachers from Emily Foord Kindy in Stafford, will be joining thousands of Australians in the annual JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes.
Asha and her team will join over 30,000 walkers, who are taking steps and raising funds, in over 30 locations across Australia, over the months of October and November.
Currently there is no cure and no way to prevent type 1 diabetes. And every year 2000 people are diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in Australia.
Asha was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes when she was only three and her mother, Fiona Bryson, said it came as a huge shock to their family.
“When Asha was first diagnosed we knew nothing about this chronic condition, but it’s amazing just how many people are affected by this condition. Even if just a bit of money is raised, at least we have raised awareness,” Fiona said.
The Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund (JDRF) is the world leader in raising funds and awareness for type 1 diabetes. In July this year, JDRF Australia was awarded Australian Charity of the Year.
According to JDRF, “Type 1 diabetes is a lifelong autoimmune disease that destroys the ability to produce insulin, a hormone, which is vital for life. People can be diagnosed with the disease at any age, though diagnosis is most common in children.
“People with type 1 diabetes need multiple insulin injections or a continuous infusion from an insulin pump every day. However, insulin is not a cure.
“The causes of type 1 diabetes are not fully understood, though genetic and environmental triggers play a role. There is currently no way to prevent or cure type 1 diabetes.”
Mrs Bryson said that they are very keen to raise as much money as possible in this year’s walk, as well as raise awareness of the disease, which is, all to often, confused with type 2 diabetes.
“By taking part in the walk, we are not just fundraising, we are also supporting those with type 1. It’s also a chance for our family and friends to rally around Asha and make her feel supported,” Fiona said.
“The biggest challenge, for Asha and our family, is the unpredictable highs and lows. It is also the stress and worry that we have when she is away from us, such as, when she is at kindy.
“But, the support that we have had from Emily Foord Kindy is and has been phenomenal, and without their support, there was a possibility that Asha would have not been able to attend kindy.
“The staff manage and monitor Asha’s blood glucose levels to ensure she has had a safe and fulfilled day.
“This type of support in our community gives us hope that every child, diagnosed with type 1, has the chance to attend kindergarten and school, where they can grow and accomplish so much.
“And it also gives Asha confidence that she can be the independent girl she wants to be,” Fiona said.
The JDRF annual Walk to Cure Diabetes will be held in 7th Brigade Park on Sunday November 2 from 9am. Go to the JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes home page to make a donation to Asha’s team and find out more about Type 1 diabetes.
Asha Manfield from Group 1A with Mrs Neil and Asha’s mum, Fiona Bryson, are walking on Sunday November 2 for the annual JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes