Kornel Wach, from Omagh, is just 9 years old and bravely getting his hair cut off to raise money for his local diabetes support group this Diabetes Week.
Four years ago Kornel and his family were given the news that he had type 1 diabetes and life as they knew it was about to change.
Type 1 diabetes is a serious condition which can cause your blood glucose level to get too high because your body can’t make a hormone called insulin. About 8% of people with diabetes have type 1. No one knows exactly what causes it, but it’s not to do with being overweight and it isn’t currently preventable.
Kornel’s mum, Julita Wach, said, “We didn’t know anything about type 1 diabetes and didn’t know anyone else who had it. It was a really difficult time for us because we wanted to stay strong and positive for Kornel but we were all struggling with the diagnosis.
“I left my job so I could look after Kornel as he was so young when he was diagnosed and there was a lot to learn. It was a lonely and scary time; having to inject Kornel and prick his finger for testing throughout the day took its toll on us. Thankfully, everything changed when we met the Omagh Diabetes Support Group.
“Kornel got to meet other people who knew what it was like and they understood what we were going through. That is why Kornel wants to help fundraise for Diabetes UK Northern Ireland and their support group in Omagh, they helped us and now we want to help them. Kornel is getting his hair chopped at Trev’s Barbers in Omagh on Friday 18 June and I hope you will help raise money to help others.”
Tina McCrossan, National Director at Diabetes UK Northern Ireland, said: "We want to thank Kornel for taking on this fundraising challenge. Last year, we saw demand for our services reach record levels, while our own funding was significantly impacted. This year is still going to be very challenging and, more so than ever, people with diabetes need us, but we need your support to be able to continue fighting their corner.
“Without the help of generous supporters like Kornel, we simply would not be able to offer support to the thousands of people with diabetes contacting our helpline, to campaign to keep people with diabetes safe in the workplace, or to invest in vital research – taking us a step closer to our vision of a world where diabetes can do no harm.”
Diabetes Week runs from 14 – 20 June so if you would like to support Kornel in his fundraising efforts then please visit his Crowdfunding page for more information.