The Charles H. Best Diabetes Centre, a registered charity, is the only agency of its kind in Canada that works specifically to help children and adults living with Type 1 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes accounts for just 10 percent of the country's diabetic population, yet the disease left uncontrolled can lead to neuropathy, diseases of the kidney and eyes, and other more serious consequences. There are over 300 factors that can affect blood sugars, the management of which is pivotal to maintaining the best possible control-so to say managing the disease is a challenge is a gross understatement.
The Centre, through its numerous programs, helps to support and educate those with living with Type 1 diabetes and their families on daily management, carbohydrate counting and symptom control of the disease. Support is offered through education, new parent programs and even a pager program that gives patients direct access to a registered nurse or dietitian. In addition, it runs a school program focused on keeping students living with type 1 diabetes safe while they are at school. This program teaches school staff about blood sugar highs and lows, how to notice the symptoms of a blood sugar imbalance and how to treat a life-threatening low blood sugar, should an imbalance occur.
The nonprofit organization was a recipient of a one by oner grant from promotional products retailer 4imprintr which it used to purchase logo'd bags for classroom emergency kits. The bags contain lifesaving supplies including a juice box, granola bar, fast-acting sugars and other medical provisions. "The logo'd bag makes it easy for school staff to quickly identify this bag of life-saving supplies," said Laura Mountjoy, Charles H. Best Diabetes Centre's executive director. "They're really fantastic. We love them-and our parents love them."