Sierra Bowen (8) and Ruari Buttle (12) have a lot in common. They both live on the sunny mid north coast of NSW in Coffs Harbour and love to dance. They also both live with type 1 diabetes (T1D).
When their diabetes clinic put them in touch, the girls hit it off from the minute they first met.
“The best thing about having a little diabuddy is it’s comforting to have someone who totally gets it. Sierra reminds me I’m not alone doing this. We have lots in common too!” Ruari says.
Sierra agrees. “We both love the same things - dancing, animals and being creative. We can talk about diabetes stuff together.”
The T1D diagnosis came as a huge shock for both families, who lean on each other as they navigate injections, count carbs and try to balance insulin levels each day. Although it’s definitely tough some days, they are adamant they just want to be treated like everyone else and their mission is not to let diabetes hinder their future.
Ruari’s mum, Kari, strives everyday to balance growing up with a chronic condition such as T1D with fully experiencing all the great things Australia has to offer kids like her daughter and Sierra.
“We want Ruari to be a kid first and foremost. To have the experiences and opportunities that other kids her age have. So I think trying to find balance is the key. We’re not always successful at doing that mind you, but that’s the aim.” Kari says.
Finding a cure for T1D is Sierra and Ruari’s ultimate dream, and they’ve taken on the One Walk Step Challenge to help make it happen.
“I want there to be a cure so all the kids with diabetes don’t have to struggle anymore.” Sierra says.
Ruari agrees. “The researchers need funds to get their work done, you know!” she adds.
Team Sierra has already raised over $10,000, but with 4 days left to go, they’re not done just yet. If you’d like to support them, you can donate here.