Age: 6
Age at T1D diagnosis: 4

Aya has only had T1D for about a year, but she is already an avid advocate for research and innovation. On National T1D Awareness Day last year, she proudly ran in a 5K Color Run, donning a shirt that read, “I am a type 1 diabetic” to help spread awareness. Her birthday cake substitute—sugar–free Jell–O—created an opportunity to inform her friends about T1D. Aya also loves taking ballet lessons, making up her own songs, and participating in Girl Scouts, including overnight camping trips and badge projects, as a Daisy Scout. As part of a military family, Aya’s diagnosis means planning for meals and educating others about her T1D every time the family relocates. Since adaptability and resilience are already part of Aya’s life, they have helped her accept the new reality of T1D.

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JDRF is the leading global organization funding type 1 diabetes (T1D) research. Our strength lies in our exclusive focus and singular influence on the worldwide effort to end T1D.