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Student plans fund-raiser to slam dunk diabetes

April 01, 2005|by TRISH RUDDER

trishr@herald-mail.com

BERKELEY SPRINGS, W.Va. - Jenna Hansroth said she was eating a doughnut at Dunkin' Donuts when she came up with the name Dunkin' Diabetes for a 3-on-3 basketball tournament she is organizing to raise funds to fight diabetes.

The tournament, the brainchild of the Morgan County 12-year-old, will be April 16 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Warm Springs Middle School on Warm Springs Way in Berkeley Springs. Proceeds will go toward diabetes research.

Hansroth, a sixth-grade student at Warm Springs, was diagnosed last September with Type 1 diabetes. Her mother, Lori Hansroth, said she took Jenna to the doctor for flu-like systems. The doctor found her blood sugar so high that it was recommended she be hospitalized at West Virginia University Hospital in Morgantown, W.Va. Lori Hansroth said she immediately drove her daughter the two hours to Morgantown. Jenna Hansroth was hospitalized for three days.

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According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 60,000 girls younger than 20 have Type 1 (juvenile) diabetes. Juvenile diabetes is an autoimmune disease in which the pancreas produces little or no insulin. Lori Hansroth said every year about 30,000 Americans are diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes and most are younger than 30 and almost half are children.

Jenna Hansroth said she wanted "to do something to help out by raising money." The proceeds of the basketball tournament will go to the international Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, said Lori Hansroth.

Jenna Hansroth said "it makes me feel good about helping others." She said she came up with the idea because her 4-H Club, the Morgan County Mighty Iroquois, required the members to come up with a "self-determined project," said Lori Hansroth. The project will raise money for research and also teach others about the disease, she said.

Lori Hansroth said she gives her daughter a lot of credit for her willingness to share her experience about the disease.

"I'm really proud of her to take on the responsibility of such a large project. It's important for kids to be involved with their community," she said.

Awards will be given to first-, second- and third-place winners for each of the three boys and girls divisions. The divisions are ages 12-15, ages 16-21 and over 21. There is a $25 team registration fee and a $3 spectator admission at the door. A discount of $5 for pre-registration will be given to teams who sign up Saturday at 10 a.m. at the Berkeley Springs State Park gazebo. For more information, call 304-258-3692.

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