The Southwest Ohio Chapter of JDRF recently selected Caroline Johnson of Blanchester to be a member of the JDRF Youth Ambassador program for the 2018-19 school year.
This program accepts applicants among children who have type 1 diabetes (T1D) and who set a great example for others living with the disease. Caroline, 9, was diagnosed with T1D at the age of 8 and goes above and beyond through their support of JDRF and dedicated commitment to fundraising for research to find a cure.
Caroline is going into the fourth grade at Blanchester Local Schools.
When asked about living with diabetes, she said, “It is life-changing. Diabetes is tough. You can do the same thing every day, and get different results. It’s tough to be a kid when you’re trying to keep your sugar in range.
“But, this is my story, and I want to help others like me.”
The Youth Ambassador Program was created to empower children with T1D by giving them the opportunity to provide diabetes education to the public.
Caroline is one of a few at Blanchester Local Schools and one of an estimated 30,800 residents of the Greater Cincinnati area who live with T1D.
An autoimmune disease where the body destroys its own insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas, T1D is often misunderstood, which is why the awareness-building aspect of the Youth Ambassador role is so important.
During the next year, Caroline will provide health education throughout the community to raise support and awareness of type 1 diabetes. She will speak to businesses, schools, and hospitals, as well as participate in JDRF sanctioned outreach events.
Youth Ambassadors have a positive outlook on life and diabetes, and also represent JDRF at various local events.
“Our Youth Ambassadors play a vital role for our organization by educating others about T1D and by demonstrating that it doesn’t have to hold you back,” said JDRF Southwest Ohio Executive Director.