Sports stars and community heroes have rallied together to promote Mind Over Matter (MOM) Month which aims to raise critical funds and help young people living with type 1 diabetes overcome the challenges they face.
MOM Month asks individuals and teams to make a pledge during the month of June to support diabetes care and research at The Royal Children’s Hospital, Melbourne (RCH) and Murdoch Childrens Research Institute (MCRI).
AFL legend and former Richmond Captain, Dale Weightman is no stranger to the disease which he endured during his 250 game career at Richmond and understands what each of the one in 500 young people in Australia living with type 1 diabetes face everyday.
"When I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes I was at the peak of my career and had no idea how it was going to affect my life. With some trial and error, I quickly realised that the most important thing was to settle into a routine of training and playing. Once the balance was struck, it was simply managing my diet, exercise and making sure I had enough fuel in my system. There’s really nothing stopping you."
Passionate about supporting young people and growing awareness of the disease, Dale has invited patients from the Royal Children’s Hospital to attend a number of education sessions at the Richmond Football Club during MOM Month designed to motivate and inspire the next generation of success stories.
“Statistics show that one in every three young Australians living with type 1 diabetes deal with mental health issues. For me, that’s an alarming figure. I want these young people with diabetes to realise that they can live out their dreams without any limitations”, explained Weightman.
Weightman’s vision is echoed by fellow MOM Month ambassadors including Greater Western Sydney midfielder, Sam Reid (who lives and plays with type 1 diabetes), AFL Premiership star Campbell Brown and Melbourne Vixen Julie Corletto, whose father’s suffer from type 2 diabetes.
Each of the ambassador’s have pledged to raise money for the campaign by committing to specific individual MOM Month challenges which include; giving up chocolate, a public 'wax off' and shaving famous facial hair!
Weightman has pledged to shave off his 30 year old moustache in a bid to raise $5000 for MOM Month. “Everyone who participates in MOM Month will make a huge difference. Whether you raise $20, $200 or $2000, every cent goes straight towards funding medical advances and ensuring the highest standard of care and support for children and young people suffering from this disease.”
Professor Fergus Cameron, Head of Diabetes Services at the RCH and Head of Diabetes Research at MCRI says, “Living with diabetes is all about challenge. The stakes are high. We are motivated by the fact that our patients face up to these challenges every day. Our challenge then is to match their commitment with our research endeavours in trying to find ways to make their lives better. Your challenge is to join our team and support our patients.”
Mind Over Matter Month continues for the entire month of June and aims to raise $400,000 over 2 years to fund the Aitken Fellowship at the RCH and MCRI. The Aitken Fellowship trains junior paediatric doctors at the hospital equipping them with the tools to continue to improve the care and treatment of children living with type 1 diabetes.
Participants can choose to pledge for the reminder of the month or opt for a one off challenge.
Visit www.mindovermattermonth.com for all the info and to register as a fundraiser.
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