Young Leaders from United Kingdom

My name is Alex Silverstein and I am from the United Kingdom (London). I was born on the 7th November 1987, a week earlier than expected. Had I been born on the 14th November I would celebrate my birthday on World Diabetes Day. Therefore, perhaps it was fate that at age one I developed Type 1 diabetes. Being diagnosed so young I can’t really imagine life without diabetes and this helps me to keep a positive attitude. My mother also thinks its the reason I did a degree in Mathematics, because I began playing with decimals when testing my blood glucose levels from age two. After Graduating from University in July 2009 I began volunteering for the Charity Diabetes UK in London. In March 2010 I began working fulltime for Diabetes UK and currently my job is to look after the Diabetes UK Young Leaders Action Group.

My name is Elizabeth Rowley and I have had diabetes for over 20 years. I grew up in a small town in Illinois (USA). In 2011 I moved to London to pursue a Master’s degree in International Development at the London School of Economics to better understand global issues and work to change systemic problems. Living with diabetes has been a struggle, but I have done my best not to let it stop me from doing the things I want in life. Diabetes has brought me my best friend and husband (who also has Type 1 diabetes) and it has given me lots of determination and passion.

My first experience with diabetes is best explained through the following quote from my aunt: ‘’Your mom and dad were totally blind-sided with the diagnosis. I think they were both in shock. It was so horrible and so sad to administer insulin shots to a little 4-year old and to prick your little fingers for testing. I think your mom, dad, grandma, grandpa, and me would all have happily taken the diabetes from you and given it to ourselves if such a thing were possible. It was true when you were four and it is just as true today.’’ I am lucky to have such a supportive family who made my diagnosis experience as easy as possible, despite the shock.

(coming soon)
(coming soon)