NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WVEC) -- It’s the most important thing 11-year-old Trevor Roach says he will do this summer.
From July 24 to July 26, the Newport News rising sixth grader will be in Washington D.C. to lobby members of Congress to support Type 1 (T1D) diabetes research.
He joins a Children’s Congress delegation of children across the globe, along with celebrity advocates chosen by JDRF.
JDRF is the leading global organization funding type 1 diabetes (T1D) research.
Roach is one of 160 delegates, ages 4-17, chosen out of a pool of 1300 applicants. He will get to meet face to face with his Congressional delegation to persuade them to support funding for diabetes research.
“Lives are at stake. I’m honored to represent this area to do what I can to push for a cure,” Trevor says.
While in D.C., Roach will also participate in a number of activities on the Hill, including a congressional hearing to highlight the daily struggles of living with Type 1.
Roach was diagnosed with Type 1 at the age of 8, just two weeks shy of his 9th birthday. Type 1 Diabetes is when the pancreas stops producing insulin.
Patients spend a lifetime on insulin to keep their blood sugar levels at a healthy range.
“I have to count every carb I eat in order to figure out how much insulin to take. Sometimes, my levels go too low or too high and that can be very dangerous," Roach says.
Roach is no stranger to JDRF. For the past three years, he served as a representative at the annual gala in Virginia Beach to help raise funds.
This past school year, he was Student Body President at Hilton Elementary in Newport News. A few days after Children’s Congress, Roach will head to Ypsilanti, Michigan to compete in track in the AAU Junior Olympics.
“I don’t let Type 1 get in the way of things I like to do. I enjoy running but it does require me to be careful about checking my blood sugar levels often.”
According to JDRF, as many as 1.25 million Americans have T1D, and the disease costs the U.S. as much as $276 billion, annually, in healthcare and other expenses, according to a 2014 estimate.
Donations to JDRF are used to support research.