Logistics Blog | Total Distribution, Inc. in Jacksonville, FL

Caden Kozieracki Juvenile Diabetes Research

JDRF focuses on providing funding for Type 1 Diabetes research, and providing resources and support for people of all ages and stages of the disease. From Toolkits for teens and adults, to support groups and online forums, JDRF offers help and support for a disease that affects approximately 1.25 million Americans. By the year 2050, it’s expected that 5 million people in the U.S. will have Type 1 Diabetes, making the need for research, education, and support even more necessary.

Caden Kozieracki was this year’s Youth Ambassador for the JDRF Walk, and shared his story with us.

“Hi! My name is Caden Kozieracki. I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 2012 when I was 6 years old.

My blood sugar was nearly 600. I had been sick for a few weeks, feeling weak, always thirsty, using the bathroom a lot, with stomachaches and weird feelings all over my body. I needed to go to the hospital, but was scared of all the needles. I thought I was dying. I could tell that my parents and little sister were scared too. I stayed in the hospital for four days, learning how to check my blood sugar, count the carbs in my food, and take insulin with shots. I didn't like the shots at all.

I also had to learn what symptoms I felt during high and low blood sugars. Low blood sugars feel the worst, I get dizzy, shaky, and I don't really know what's going on around me. I know high blood sugars are dangerous though because it hurts my body to be high.

I am different than my friends and sometimes they don't understand how serious diabetes is, or why I may not feel well, or why I may act differently. I get embarrassed when checking my blood sugar at school before eating, or before a test, or when I feel funny. My mom is a teacher at my school and helps me everyday. My teachers help me too. Sometimes my sugar is too low and I have to drink or eat sugar and lie down or sometimes my machines don't work and my blood sugar gets very high and I have to go home. One time last year at school, my blood sugar was 29, I was falling out of my chair and I didn't know what was happening. Some of my friends got really scared, my teacher called my mom to come to the classroom. Living with T1D is hard.

JDRF makes life better. I know I have my machines because of research funded by JDRF. They educate people about diabetes. Every March, I help to educate the kids and adults in my school about T1D too. We have a walk and raise money for my One Walk team, Caden's Crew. I am the co-captain of Caden's Crew. We have raised over $10,000 in the last 4 years for JDRF.

I like knowing that we are helping to raise money to cure my disease and for those like me.

It is important to me to find a cure for T1D because I want this horrible disease to go away so nobody will have to worry about it anymore.

I am so grateful and honored to share my story with you. Thank you for joining me in the work to change Type 1 to Type None!”

The North Florida Chapter of JDRF raises approximately $1.3 million dollars each year, and they count on the support of corporate partners like The Grimes Companies. Candace Monroe, JDRF Development Manager, explains the importance of the Grimes partnership, “It is so imperative to the success of the event to have our in-kind partners like Grimes. Having Grimes and America 1 donate the truck and delivering to the walk site is an invaluable partnership. Serving as a non-profit, event budgets are extremely tight, and by Grimes donating this service it allows us to put more money raised towards research for Type 1 diabetes, which is our JDRF mission. We are so grateful for their generosity!”

The Grimes Companies encourages other businesses to support the great work of JDRF and other community agencies that help promote the health and well-being of our community.

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