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'Inspired by Diabetes' U.S. National Contest Winners Reveal Unique Challenges but Common Resolve in the Face of Diabetes
Date:10/21/2009

Regardless of what Dalton does to manage his diabetes daily, he still sees himself as an average teenage boy who lifts weights, runs track, and, most significantly, is an honor student at Gate City High School.

This year's adult grand-prize winner has faced equally daunting challenges. Megan Rozek of Bend, Ore., tackled diabetes not as someone with the disease, but as the parent of 7-year-old Anya who was diagnosed in May 2007. As part of her entry into the "adult category, visual expression," Meg submitted a photograph of her daughter with her hand outstretched to the sky. Each finger was individually lettered to spell out the word "brave."

"When Anya was diagnosed, I kept telling her that she needed to be brave," said Rozek. "For a child, the hospital experience can be scary, but I told her that the finger pokes and shots wouldn't hurt after a while as long as she thought positively. I look at my daughter and I think that she is brave every day for facing this illness."

Today, with Meg's help, Anya has just completed the second grade, and her favorite activities include jumping rope and reading to her little brother.

Inspired by Diabetes builds on the theme of the IDF's World Diabetes Day 2007-08, dedicated to children and adolescents living with or at risk for diabetes worldwide. The spirit of the competition is to bring families and people with diabetes together to raise awareness of the global burden of diabetes, and draw particular attention to people who do not have the resources they need to fight the disease.

By entering the competition, participants have had a direct impact on the lives of children with diabetes around the world.

In honor of the participants from the U.S., Lilly made a $50,000 donation to the ADA for scholarships for low-income children to attend the ADA's diabetes camps and independent camps to which the ADA provides financial support. The ADA is the largest pr
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