A Scottish family has raised over £6,000 for diabetes charities following a barn dance inspired by seven-year-old Lexie Stewart (pictured, centre), who has type 1 diabetes.
The barn dance, which took place on the outskirts of Dunkeld, was attended by more than 300 people. Local band LMS provided the evening’s music.
Overall, £6,586 was collected which will be shared between JDRF, the type 1 diabetes research charity, and the Tayside Pediatric Diabetes Education Fund (TPDEF).
The success of the event was welcomed by both charities and the Dunkeld town, and for Jill (pictured, right) and Lee, Lexie’s parents, it served as an extra step closer to eventually finding a cure for type 1 diabetes.
“This barn dance was for Lexie,” Jill told Daily Record. “It was a lovely summer’s evening, the dance floor was never empty and we are overwhelmed by everyone’s kindness and generous donations.”
Lexie was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of four. Prior to her diagnosis, she was continuously thirsty and lost a lot of weight. It was when Jill’s mother-in-law, a nurse, spotted Lexie’s symptoms that she was immediately taken to her GP.
“It was quite a shock when Lexie was diagnosed,” said Jill. “We didn’t know anything about type 1 diabetes and for a long time didn’t know anyone else who had the condition.”
Lexie has since had to adapt to regular blood glucose tests and carbohydrate counting to ensure her blood glucose levels remain stable.
“She now uses an insulin pump and copes extremely well with the constant monitoring. She takes it all in her stride and we are incredibly proud of her,” Jill said.
For Jill, finding JDRF and TPDEF proved a light-bulb moment, and inspired her fundraising.
“It is so important to find a cure for someone like Lexie who has her whole life ahead of her and for her to know that there are other people like her and lots of people out there to support her.”
Holly Davies (pictured, left), who works for JDRF, was keen to highlight that the money raised by Jill and her family will prove extremely valuable, particularly in Scottish research.
“I know everyone in Jill’s family and circle of friends worked really hard to make the barn dance a success, from giving the barn a thorough clean through to decorating it beautifully with banners, flowers and balloons,” she said.
“The money will go towards supporting research projects in Scotland and beyond and with every project we are another step closer to finding a cure for the 29,000 adults and children in Scotland who live with type 1 diabetes.”
Fundraising is a tremendous outlet for increasing the profile of diabetes research, but there are plenty of things that everyone can do to increase diabetes awareness.
If you are looking to get involved in diabetes fundraising or raising awareness in some other capacity, be sure to check out our Diabetes Events 2016 page.