What We Do


Diabetes Youth Canterbury is a group of volunteer parents who complement the work done by the medical professionals involved in our children’s care.

We provide financial, educational and emotional support to our families through camps, activities, books, equipment and newsletters. We also lobby the Ministry of Health, PHARMAC and the CDHB for improved care, services and products that might allow our children to lead as near a normal life as possible despite having a chronic health condition. Keeping up to date with new medications and having access to accurate and up-to-date management tools and technology can help prevent devastating complications such as kidney failure, blindness, stroke, heart disease and amputation.

There is no cure for Type 1 diabetes and it cannot be prevented or screened for in the general population. Once diagnosed, insulin shots must be taken every day for life alongside finger prick blood tests and attention to diet, exercise and a number of other factors. It can be a very intensive condition to manage, especially in children.

For reasons that aren’t known, Canterbury has one of the world’s highest rates of Type 1 diabetes in children and young adults– there are usually at least 300 under 25’s in Canterbury with Type 1 diabetes and another young person being diagnosed on average every 10 days. Typically, children are in the 5-10 age group although Type 1 diabetes can strike children under the age of one and also into late adulthood.