My name is Eileen and I am 12 years old. Four years ago, I was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. The doctor told me that I would never be a normal kid. Instead, I have to take blood samples, inject insulin, count carbohydrates and keep track of my supplies like test strips and insulin. If I don't, my illness could really damage my health and it would forever change my goals for the rest of my life. The Special Diabetes Program could change all that. This summer, I traveled to Washington, D.C., as part of Children's Congress to see Congressman Kevin McCarthy and Sens. Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein. This gave me a chance to share my story in my own words and ask them to support the Special Diabetes Program because I believe it holds the keys to a cure, which would mean everything to me and my family. For example, research has developed the artificial pancreas technology, which will help to take the guess work out of Type 1 diabetes to help keep me healthy until a cure is found.

Diabetes Awareness Month was in November, and I am grateful that so many in Congress, especially so many from California, supported the Special Diabetes Program. I hope their support means that the program will continue so I can live a better life with fewer worries, and even one day I can have a cure.

Eileen Roux