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Students raise $13,000 for diabetes group

By Stacy Davis, Danbury News Times

853 days ago   Article ID# 1520386
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Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation

DANBURY, CONNECTICUT (Danbury News Times) - Hundreds of students at Huckleberry Hill Elementary School learned Thursday morning they had raised more than $13,000 for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.

"They went above and beyond," said Jean Marie Trick, a Kids Walk coordinator for the organization.

Trick, who works with schools in Fairfield and Westchester counties, said most schools raise about $4,000.

Huckleberry Hill students raised the money by accepting donations and pledging to exercise for 15 minutes on their own time for each one, said Karin Prizio, the school nurse coordinator and an organizer for the event.

Students jumped rope, danced, played Nintendo Wii exercise games, and rode their bikes, Prizio said.

The fundraiser began last month with a Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation representative giving a PowerPoint presentation on healthy eating and exercise and teaching about Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes, Prizio said.

Huckleberry Hill's student council made posters to hang in every classroom to encourage participation, and each time a student earned a donation a brightly colored paper sneaker with his or her name on it was hung on a classroom door, Prizio said.

Four Huckleberry Hill students who have Type 1 diabetes agreed to hold a banner during the closing celebration Thursday morning, Prizio said.

After Trick announced the results of the fundraiser and thanked the students for their efforts, parents of the four students read books to their children's classmates about living with diabetes.

Jason and Cindy Schoeller talked to their son Nate's second-grade class.

Cindy Schoeller said they knew something was wrong with their 7-year-old son two years ago, when he lost six pounds in one week and became extremely thirsty.

Nate was showing the same symptoms as their diabetic cat.

"I hope he doesn't have diabetes," Jason Schoeller said to Cindy.

"And then we looked at each other and we just knew," she said.

"Do you know how (he) got diabetes?" asked Cawley DiStephan, one of Nate's classmates.

Cindy explained that Nate's diabetes developed when his pancreas stopped producing enough insulin.

Prizio said a percentage of the money the kids raised will be used to buy physical education equipment and books about nutrition and tolerance.

"It was like a win-win situation," Prizio said. "The kids actually get something back from it."

Copyright 2014 Danbury News Times   (Copyright Terms)
Updated 853 days ago   Article ID# 1520386

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