‘I’ve run 10 Marathons all in a year to raise awareness for Type 1 diabetes. I started ‘The Type1 Foundation’ after my daughter was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. She was misdiagnosed 3 times, ending up just an hour off a coma on ICU. We were on holidays in Queensland at the time. It was a heartbreaking. I wouldn’t wish this experience on any family. This was the moment that I knew I wanted to do something to change the way others thought of this illness.
‘It’s a chronic, lifelong incurable illness and the most misunderstood illness in today’s society. Type 1 diabetes (insulin dependent diabetes) affects 160 children in the Geelong region, with rates rising by 3% every year. A diagnosis in a family is the most traumatic event and we wanted to create a support network for families that went through a similar situation to us.
‘I soon found running. I knew I had 2 legs and a very strong mind and that this could be a way to raise awareness. I signed up to my first marathon and started training for the Great Ocean Road Marathon. After I finished it I couldn’t believe the awareness it created. People were starting to understand my daughter and others like her. I wanted more awareness so I signed up to run every marathon in Australia in 1 year. 10 Marathons in a year! I completed my last in Alice Springs. The finish was so emotional. It’s been a tough year trying to manage four kids, aged 2,5,8 and 12, as well as a charity which takes up a massive part of my life. But I love it all and I’m so passionate about creating change for the future generations of Type 1 kids.
‘Running marathons is how ‘The Type1 Foundation’ began. We are a not-for-profit charity set up to support families living with Type 1 daily. We understand a cure is the ultimate but living with Type 1 daily is the reality.
‘We support families living in the Barwon region by creating events so they can connect with each other. We run awareness campaigns, hold an annual Gala Ball (held recently with over 470 attending and raising over $30k). We also have a running group to raise awareness, fund children to attend diabetes camps (working closely with Barwon Health), and fund lifesaving technology to make it available for families.
‘Running my last (10th) marathon around Australia in Alice Springs was the most memorable moment so far. The feeling of achieving what I set out to do was just incredible. The emotion was overwhelming. I couldn’t believe I had done it! I’d spread awareness all over Australia for Type 1 Diabetes.
‘We hold lots of events to support and connect families, we always need volunteers. www.facebook.com/groups/thetype1foundation/ We would love others to jump on board and spare some of their time for our cause. We have so much we want to achieve, it’s only the beginning for us!!!’ Ange McCaughley