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Meet Leah Nutkis, JDRF Youth Ambassador

February 23, 2012

Hi there! My name is Leah Nutkis and I am 9 years old and in the 3rd grade. My favorite class is computer! I am a video game expert! I love my dogs Zeus and Star. I’m an artist. I play sports. And oh yeah, I have type 1 diabetes. But that’s just what I have, not who I am.

Leah Nutkis

I was diagnosed only 6 months ago. It was a really scary time before we found out what was going on. I didn’t feel “right” for many months before. My mom and dad kept telling the doctors something wasn’t right. Finally after demanding a blood test, their gut feelings were confirmed. We were relieved a little. At least we knew what “it” was.

We were sent to Children’s Medical Center in Dallas. They were amazing. I’ve never seen so many people come in and out of a room. My mom said she felt like she had been thrown back in to school. I know she was scared. But they held her hand and said it would all be ok. This is where I met my doctor – Dr. Sumpter. She has type 1 diabetes too! She came every day and sat and answered all of our questions and was the first to say that this didn’t change anything about who I was or who I was going to be.

It’s been challenging and it’s not fun sometimes, but with the help of my family, my friends, my school, my doctors and the diabetes educators we are adjusting to what my mom says is our “new normal”. In the beginning I was worried that I was different from everyone around me. But my friends make me feel just like them.

Not long after this, I found out about this great group called JDRF. They work really hard to tell everyone about type 1 diabetes and raise money so we can find a cure. We held a Kids Walk at my school and raised $6,000! GO HORNETS! Now I’m helping my mom get items donated for the silent auction at the upcoming Dream Gala.

I am excited that one day I’ll be able to say I was part of finding a cure for juvenile diabetes… and with your help, we can fund important diabetes research together!

Be a part of finding a Cure!

Make this year’s Dream Gala a night to remember by joining us at the event or donating an item for the silent auction. Tickets can be purchased online, over the phone, through email or if you received an invitation by mail, you can send your response to us with payment. Find out more at the Gala website.

Connect us with your school and host a Kids Walk to Cure Diabetes! JDRF will host a presentation about type 1 diabetes, healthy practices and the difference between type 1 and type 2. Then our coordinators will come back two weeks later to lead the students in a Kids Walk. It is so easy for everyone involved and will lead to funding important diabetes research. Learn more at the Kids Walk website.

The JDRF Greater Dallas Chapter welcomes Leah Nutkis and her mother Stacy to our wonderful network of JDRF Families and Friends on our journey toward finding a cure!

To learn more about the JDRF Dallas chapter, visit our JDRF Dallas website!

One Comment leave one →
  1. Jennifer Nutkis permalink
    February 26, 2012 10:22 pm

    Leah, you are so amazing and strong!! You are such an inspiration to all other children out there who are figuring out how to make the best out of their “new normal”, just like you are! I am SO proud to be able to call you my sister! I love you so much and will always be here for you whenever you need me. I wish Tennessee was not so far away from Texas, but keep me close in your heart like I keep you close in mine ❤

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