ST. GEORGE — The Utah Chapter of Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation is putting on its sneakers for a community 5K walk on Saturday at 9 a.m., starting at the Virgin River Trailhead at the Crosby Family Confluence Park, 2099 S. Convention Center Drive, in St. George (south of the Dixie Center St. George).
The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation hopes to raise over $79,000 to fund research to find better treatments, prevention methods and a cure for Type 1 diabetes and its complications. The disease affects more than 3 million Americans today; and 1 in 3 children born in the United States will develop Type 1 diabetes, according to the 2012 National Diabetes Fact Sheet.
“With diabetes skyrocketing and over 175,000 Utahns living with this disease, our Walks to Cure Diabetes are now more important than ever,” said Stacey Bowen, development manager for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Utah/Idaho Chapter. “Our $79,000 goal for Southern Utah may be ambitious, but attainable with a philanthropic community like ours who rally to support its people. The more money we raise, the more research we will be able to fund, hopefully with a cure in sight.”
St. George resident Brandon Roundy has had Type 1 diabetes since he was 7. His mom and dad, Kristin and Cole, have been actively involved in fundraising for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation since Brandon’s diagnosis. Their team, Brandon’s Band of Buddies, has raised nearly $6,000 over the past three years and hopes to add another $1,000 to their total this year.
“The JDRF walk is our favorite event of the year,” Kristin Roundy said. “There is something so powerful about watching a huge group of people come together and care about something that affects your child (and you) every minute of their life. These kids are heroes. They fight an enormous battle with so many needles and pokes that most of us can’t even imagine. They need us to fight with them and for them. We have to find a cure because I can’t even imagine him having to live like this his whole life. It is more than my heart can bear.”
The Roundy family will be joined by hundreds of walkers — including numerous family teams like theirs, corporate teams and school teams — who come out each year to support the fundraising walk.
“I am so thankful for the work the JDRF does to help get us closer to the cure,” Cole Roundy said. “So much of Brandon’s life is made easier by the advancements that have come about, in large part, due to the funding made possible by the JDRF.”
On-site registration begins at 9 a.m. Saturday and a ceremonial ribbon-cutting will take place at 10 a.m. The ribbon will be cut by the brothers of local girl, Kycie Terry, who was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes earlier this year and is in rehabilitation at Primary Children’s for a traumatic brain injury secondary to her diabetes diagnosis.
Following the walk, a cookout lunch will be provided along with numerous carnival-style games for kids, face painting, bounce house, and rock wall. The walk is generously sponsored by many community partners, including Worker’s Compensation Fund, Parker Advisory Group, Carl’s Jr., Wendy’s, and the Yamagata Foundation. All of the funds raised will go towards the critical research being done to cure, treat, and prevent Type 1 diabetes.
- What: JDRF Walk
- When: Saturday, 9 a.m.
- Where: 1850 S Convention Center Dr, St. George
- Registration: On-site Saturday 9 a.m. | In advance online
- Information for participants, sponsors: Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation website | Telephone 888-533-WALK
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