Lions help to stop diabetes


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In 1984 during a Lions convention in Las Vegas, I was honored to see Lions Clubs International make their first research donation to the American Diabetes Association. That was also my first week as an employee of the ADA here in Alaska!

The American Diabetes Association mission is to cure and prevent diabetes and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes. In Alaska, that translates to 68,500 people affected by diabetes and over 90,000 Alaskans at risk of pre-diabetes. Lions in 1927 were asked by Helen Keller to become the knights of the blind and their many projects often are associated with sight conservation. Diabetes is the leading cause of adult blindness in the United States, and herein lies where our missions of caring join for a common cause.

For over 25 years, Lions have worked tirelessly throughout Alaska providing education, information, volunteer manpower and funding for diabetes activities. The American Diabetes Association could not fulfill its mission without their support and friendship. Each summer the ADA holds a diabetes camp for children with diabetes, and Lions make sure these youngsters have the opportunity to learn about living with diabetes and gain life skills for success. In addition, the children learn they are not alone. Lifelong friendships are made at camp, and at our Family Link events like the Tour to Cure bicycling event and Step Out — a walk to stop diabetes.

Lions help their communities learn the risks of diabetes and how to be screened. This year, the 2012 American Diabetes Association Alert Day was March 27. This year, Lions will again be on the forefront to help stop diabetes. More information can be found at www.diabetes.org or call our office at (907) 272-1424.

Thank you, Lions, for being our heroes.

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