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Young volunteers win funding

Diabetes UK has helped a network of young volunteers acquire funding for an ambitious community project.

‘Circle D’, a support group for young people with diabetes, has secured a £1,500 grant from youth volunteering charity, ‘V’. Based in Gravesend, Kent, Circle D was set up in 2007 by Shelley Bennett and Sally Hicks after they identified a serious lack of support for young people with diabetes in their area. The group meets regularly to discuss the condition and related issues, as well as for social activities.

Supporting young people with diabetes

Diabetes UK provided guidance and ideas to aid Circle D in their application for the grant but, as Verity Steddon, Diabetes UK’s Volunteer Development Manager says, the hard work was done by the volunteers: “It’s fantastic that this grant has been awarded; Shelley, Sally and the other members have done a tremendous amount of work in setting up their support group. This money will help to develop the group further and support other young people living with diabetes in Kent.”

The V grant will be used to promote awareness of diabetes among young people in Kent and will help fund two main events taking place early next year.

Relaxed environment

Shelley, who has Type 1 diabetes, is confident that the V grant will build on the success that the Circle D group has already achieved: “Diabetes is a tough condition that is 24/7, there are so many unsupported young people with diabetes out there and myself and Circle D want to help improve their lives. Diabetes can be a very lonely condition, especially when people are young. By creating an environment where people are relaxed they can meet others the same and not feel so alone.”

Circle D's events

The first of Circle D’s events will be a “fun/open day” to be held in Dartford next February, and the second will be a BBQ in early April. Both events will aim to reach and offer support to young people with diabetes in the Kent area. 

More information on the work of Circle D and  V can be found under 'Related links'.

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