Nikhita's Personal Page
Last summer, I had the incredible opportunity to spend two weeks in the Dominican Republic (DR) and personally help the diabetes community in a different country. We traveled around the country to five different diabetes communities and educate their members on ways that they can better their lives with diabetes through better management of medicine, nutrition, and exercise. My trip with AYUDA last year was a life-changing experience, and I am so blessed to go back to the DR again next summer!
On February 8, 2007, at five years old, I was diagnosed with type one diabetes. Type one diabetes is a chronic autoimmune disorder in which the body's immune system destroys the beta cells in the pancreas that produce insulin. Insulin allows glucose to enter cells to produce energy for the body. If left untreated, a high level of blood glucose can damage eyes, kidneys, nerves, and the heart, and can even lead to coma and death. In order to make up for this lack of insulin, people living with type one diabetes must manually inject the hormone into their bloodstreams through countless syringes, insulin pens, or insulin pumps.
I am so grateful to be surrounded by incredible doctors who understand what I am going through, but unfortunately, this is not the case for everyone around the world. This summer, I will embark on a second life-changing experience in the Dominican Republic as a volunteer for AYUDA. In the DR, an estimated 10% of the population have diabetes. Together with AYUDA's in-country partner organization, Aprendiendo a Vivir (AAV - "learning to live") and my fellow volunteers, we will organize diabetes education initiatives for young people and adults living with both type one and type two diabetes in 5 different provinces around the country.
AYUDA is a non-profit volunteer organization that empowers youth to serve as agents of change in diabetes communities around the world. AYUDA is dedicated to supporting local diabetes communities in their development and implementation of sustainable and global diabetes programs. AYUDA’s innovative peer learning model uses international volunteers as catalysts for empowering local youth living with diabetes to live happy and healthy lives.
AYUDA endeavors to remain a grassroots volunteer organization in a unique way: by asking its volunteers to participate in fundraising for their programs. In fact, without fundraising by volunteers like me, AYUDA’s in-country work would not be possible.
For more information about AYUDA and its important work, please visit their website. (www.ayudainc.net )
I will be traveling to the Dominican Republic in July, but my journey begins today! I need to reach my fundraising goal by July 22nd. Please support me in this important goal by making a contribution. A tax-deductible donation online makes supporting AYUDA quick and easy. You can also send your contribution to the address listed below.
To mail in a donation, please, make all checks payable to: AYUDA Inc. and please put my name (Nikhita Gopisetty) in the Memo field.
AYUDA Inc, 1700 N Moore St, Suite 2000, Arlington VA 22209
Your tax-deductible gift makes a difference. Your support will ensure that local diabetes programs will continue to thrive and that young people in these communities will have access to education and tools that will help them live happier, healthier lives with diabetes. Whatever you can give will help - it all adds up!
Diabetes is the 4th leading cause of death in the Dominican Republic, and your donation would play a critical factor in lowering this statistic. Your contribution towards AYUDA will help me propagate better lifestyles for people living with diabetes in the Dominican Republic. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
¡Juntos Somos Más Fuertes!
Together We Are Stronger!
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