#iCan Lead Other People

Gaining experience in leadership was an unexpected experience that I gained after being diagnosed with diabetes at the age of 13. I remember thinking back then that I didn’t know what the future would hold for me, I didn’t know what I would and would not be able to do. But I did know that I needed to try.

Athletics was the first place where I was given the opportunity to lead others, when I was given the honour of being captain of my country’s athletics team at an international meet. I then went on to captain my athletics team for university, which taught me a great deal about multi-tasking because I had to look after my diabetes, compete and support others in their competitions too.

But leading others in diabetes has given me great pleasure over the years. It’s a difficult one to explain, but when I was doing athletics as a young person and managing my diabetes at the same time. If I’m honest, I didn’t think I was doing anything special. I was genuinely just doing what I enjoyed and that made me feel well. But when Diabetes UK asked me to become a media ambassador for the charity, I saw it as an opportunity to share the benefits of having diabetes and sport with people.

Thanks to Diabetes UK I became a young leader with the diabetes action group YLAG a few years ago, which was an opportunity to communicate with other young people from around the country with diabetes. Then report back on here and through various other networks when I got back to Wales. I was then able to take this leadership on to a European scale, when I attended the Young Leader’s in Diabetes Camp in Tirrenia Italy last year with the International Diabetes Federation.

The experience of leading others in diabetes that still sends tingles down my spine however, is when I carried the Olympic torch in 2012. It made me so happy to be able to tell others on a massive scale that it’s okay if you’ve been diagnosed with diabetes. That it’s not the end of the world and that there’s still so much that can be achieved. I take much inspiration from the people I’ve met during this journey and follow their lead from the inspiring things that they do. Some inspirational people I’ve met have run 30 marathons in 30 days and some are about to climb Mount Kilimanjaro. Some people have been on personal journeys such as having children and making great strides in working environments.

But it’s not just one person that will lead us in to a bright future of living with diabetes, it will be all of us together. Celebrating each other’s achievements no matter how big or small and when things get tough, remembering together- #iCan.


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Meet The Author

My blog takes you through a daily look at sport, diabetes and everything in between. As an athlete that lives with type 1 diabetes I want to let you into news, views and all that is important to both of my passions.

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