Type 1 Club educates about more than blood sugar


Clarisse Bell

President Madeleine Cunningham's implanted glucose monitoring system helps to monitor her Type 1 diabetes.

Living with Type 1 diabetes can often be isolating and is not understood by many. Carlmont’s Type 1 Club is trying to end this stigma by supporting students and teaching others. 

One of Carlmont’s newest clubs is Type 1 Club. Although just founded, student leaders have many plans for the upcoming year to connect student diabetics and their peers. 

Type 1 diabetes is the autoimmune reaction destroying the pancreatic cells that create insulin. The body attacks itself by mistake, causing a lack of insulin, the hormone that allows the body to use the sugar from carbohydrates for energy.

Type 1 diabetes is often mistaken for Type 2, which is caused by a poor diet. To combat such misinformation, the club is looking to educate students about the difference and can serve as a support system for anyone in need.

“Not a lot of people understand what you have gone through, but we have and can help you through your journey,” Vice President Kya Whiting said.

Beyond helping those who live with Type 1 diabetes, Whiting and President Madeleine Cunningham are sophomores trying to create a new community within Carlmont. Both are diabetics themselves and feel that this part of Carlmont has been left out for too long. 

“I know that there are quite a few diabetics at school, so we want to reach out and give them a solid system,” Cunningham said. “We also want to raise awareness throughout the community and more money to find a cure.” 

Math teacher and club adviser Kim Callan has diabetes herself and is excited to support a club that she feels is overdue.

“I’ve been teaching at Carlmont for about 15 years and have been waiting for someone to step up and do something like this,” Callan said. 

The club’s primary focus at the moment is supporting the community through the disease support walks held in the area. Such walks include the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) One Walk, “a walk to turn Type 1 into Type none.”

“JDRF is a leading global organization funding Type One Diabetes Research,” Whiting said. “[It’s] a two-mile walk in San Francisco on Oct. 20. Everyone interested should come.”

Type 1 Club welcomes anyone to visit Room E14 on Mondays at lunch.

The club is a safe community for diabetics, friends, and anyone interested in learning more about the disease. Activities range from visiting the newly diagnosed, making cards, raising money, and walking for a cure.

“We want to give our service to the community because we know that we were helped, and we want to return that,” Whiting said. 

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