AN EIGHT-YEAR-OLD girl from the Borders has raised more than £1,000 following her big brother’s shock diabetes diagnosis last year.
Beth Johnson, from Peebles, walked 42 miles in 21 days during February.
The Kingsland Primary pupil set herself a target of raising £100 for Diabetes UK – but she smashed that within the first hour of her JustGiving page going live.
Beth’s brother Oliver, aged 12, was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes last November, which his parents say came as a complete shock as there is no history of the condition in the family.
Mum Jessica, told the Peeblesshire News that she and her husband Richard were alarmed when Oliver began rapidly losing weight.
She said: “He was drinking a lot of fluid and feeling very tired all the time.
“After a trip to the doctors, he was sent straight to Edinburgh Sick Kids Hospital where he spent the next four days learning how to cope with his new life-changing health issue.”
Oliver surprised everyone, as within two days he was administering his own injection – which is not an easy task for someone with a phobia of blood.
“He is coping really well with managing his diabetes, checking his blood glucose regularly and injecting himself six times a day,” said Jessica.
“He is now a whiz at carb-counting and is learning all about his diet. He now has a keen interest in cooking.”
Watching her brother cope with his diagnosis, Beth said it was important to her that Oliver knew he had her support.
She said: “I wanted to raise money for Diabetes UK in the hope that one day a cure will be found.”
Beth put her best foot forward aiming to walk two miles a day throughout February.
She started walking with family and then friends soon joined her in support of her fundraising mission.
Beth braved all weathers, but she never lost sight of who she was doing it for.
When she completed her final mile, there was something better waiting at the finish line than breaking through a red ribbon – the open arms of her brave big brother.
Oliver told the Peeblesshire News: “I love Beth so much for all she has done for me. I can’t thank her enough, she’s the best sister a brother could ask for.”
Beth’s fundraising page can be reached by clicking here. She has raised more than £1,000.