Nick Jonas is only 16 years old, but he’s already been a pop star for years. He’s also had type 1 diabetes for nearly four of those years. When he spoke to journalists at the National Press Club recently, he was one of the youngest guests ever invited to speak there.
Nick told the audience that before he was diagnosed with type 1, he didn’t know anything about it and had never met anybody else with diabetes. That’s all changed now, however. Young people with diabetes are among his most passionate fans, and he has even written an inspiring song, “A Little Bit Longer,” to share his experience with the disease.
“So many fans with diabetes from all over the world share their stories and thank me for being an inspiration to them,” Nick told the journalists in a press release. “It’s important for them to know that they motivate and inspire me as well.”
Nick went on to talk about his own journey with diabetes and why he embraces the role of diabetes ambassador. “I’m lucky to have a great support system in my family,” he said, “as well as the tools I need to manage my diabetes properly. By speaking publicly about my experience, I hope to increase diabetes awareness, encourage diabetes education, and help fundraising for research and other programs for kids with diabetes. “
As part of his efforts, Nick and his brothers, Kevin and Joe, started the Jonas Brothers’ Change for the Children Foundation. Through the foundation, they donate funds to pediatric diabetes research, education, and treatment. He also has a website with Bayer Diabetes Care, NicksSimpleWins.com, that helps raise awareness about diabetes. He told the Press Club, however, that much more needs to be done, and he asked for their help. “The more you report about diabetes,” he said, “the more people will know.”
One way to spread the word about diabetes might be to buy a dog tag. Nick and Bayer have created special dog tags that come with a medical alert for people with diabetes or without the alert for people interested in supporting the cause. The dog tags are available at nickssimplewins.com/dogtags.php for a donation of $5, half of which goes to the Jonas Brothers’ Change for the Children Foundation. Since the dog tag program launched in November 2008, it has raised $75,000 for the foundation’s good works.
Source: Bayer Diabetes.