November is Diabetes Awareness Month: Breelyn Dahlstrom becomes diabetes advocate after little brother’s diagnosis


Sibling support ... Sixth grader Breelyn Dahlstrom of New Albin has become a strong advocate for Type 1 Diabetes since her younger brother, Caleb, was diagnosed just over a year ago at the age of four. As part of her advocacy for Type 1 Diabetes this past year, Breelyn donated half the proceeds from selling her meat goat at the Allamakee County Fair 4-H/FFA Livestock Auction this past July to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) One Walk held in La Crosse, WI October 6, helping Team Caleb become the top family team fundraiser and second leading fundraising team overall at this year’s event with $2,970 donated. Pictured above in the photo are Breelyn and Caleb Dahlstrom with the meat goat she auctioned off at the 4-H/FFA Livestock Auction. Pictured in the photo below, left to right, are Breelyn and Caleb and their sister, Tegan, at the October 6 JDRF One Walk in La Crosse, WI, where Breelyn received a T1D Award and V1P status at the event for donating over $1,000. Submitted photos.

November is Diabetes Awareness Month. Each November communities across the nation observe National Diabetes Month to bring attention to diabetes. Families living with diabetes help their loved ones manage their diabetes and support them every day, including in some very special ways sometimes.
Sixth grader Breelyn Dahlstrom of New Albin has gained a new passion advocating for Type 1 Diabetes. Her younger brother, Caleb, was diagnosed at the age of four with Type 1 Juvenile Diabetes in October 2018. Breelyn has since learned how to help him manage his diabetes.

Breelyn and Caleb are the children of Nick and Lana Dahlstrom of New Albin. They also have a sister, Tegan, who is in between Breelyn and Caleb in the family’s age hierarchy.

In addition to learning, along with the rest of her family, how to help Caleb, Breelyn has also shared that knowledge with others in a variety of ways. She has conducted educational presentations at the local 4-H level, at the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines and at school to help spread awareness of Type 1 Diabetes. She wants others to know that “living with Type 1, you don’t have to let it slow you down from living a happy, normal, social life and you can keep enjoying the things you do every day.”

In July of this year at the Allamakee County Fair 4-H/FFA Livestock Auction held at the completion of the fair, Breelyn, who is a member of the Bear Creek Kids 4-H club, decided to donate half of the money she received from the sale of her meat goat at the auction to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF).

With the announcement of her intentions and the generosity of the auction bidders and the buyer, Breelyn was able to donate $1,200 to donate to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation at the JDRF One Walk held at Myrick Park in La Crosse, WI October 6. She donated the money in her brother’s honor under the name of Team Caleb, and for her efforts in donating over $1,000 to the event, Breelyn received at T1D Award and V1P status at the event. The money raised from the walk will help JDRF with research toward a cure and toward improvements on how to manage Type 1 Diabetes.

Breelyn and her family walked with 500 others at the October 6 event and helped raise $61,594.97 the day of the event. According to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation website, www.jdrf.org, Team Caleb ended up being the top fundraising family team and second leading fundraising team overall at this year’s walk, with 38 donating sources contributing a total of $2,970 to the walk event.

The Dahlstrom family was joined at the walk by Charlie and Deborah Hammel of Dorchester, who purchased Breelyn’s meat goat at the 4-H/FFA livestock auction and also walked at the October 6 event in honor of Caleb and in honor of their own son, Kenny, who was also diagnosed with diabetes back when he was still in school.
 

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