Liberty Twp. girl named youth ambassador for JDRF

A Liberty Twp. resident has been named the newest ambassador for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.

Addyson Mahan, 7, will serve as a member of the JDRF Youth Ambassador program for the 2016-17 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, according to JDRF.

Mahan, a second-grader at Cherokee Elementary, was diagnosed with T1D at the age of 15 months. She and her family are dedicated to fundraising for research to find a cure, according to JDRF

When asked about living with diabetes, Mahan said, “the set changes are horrible and the complications are frustrating. I don’t like it when other kids stare at me when I am doing finger sticks or when I am putting information into my pump. But, when they ask questions, I can help them understand more about type 1 diabetes. I wish they would find a cure for type 1 diabetes today so I wouldn’t have to go through this any longer.”

The Youth Ambassador Program was created to empower children with T1D by giving them the opportunity to provide diabetes education to the public.

Mahan is one of an estimated 30,800 residents in the Greater Cincinnati region 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, according to JDRF.

During the next year, Mahan 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 also represent JDRF at various local events.

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