Debbie Page is the super-grandmother heading all the way from the Northern Territory to join the Type 1 Challenge cycling team next month. She will ride 900km from Melbourne to the Barossa Valley with a group of dedicated supporters to join JDRF One Ride. Debbie told her story to JDRF:

As a past JDRF One Ride participant, I was very impressed to learn of the Type 1 Challenge in 2017.  I can still remember watching the video of the group cycling into the Novotel Barossa after their 900kms; I was overwhelmed with emotion and felt the group’s passion.

I decided there and then I would do ‘anything’ to be part of the campaign in 2018!

As a member of a type 1 diabetes (T1D) family, this is particularly powerful.  I am not allowing the fact that I am a 58-year-old grandmother deter me from taking part. I’m doing my training and feel so exciting and privileged to be a part of the Type 1 Challenge.

Debbie and her son Darcy

The Type 1 Challenge from Melbourne to Adelaide might seem beyond what many ‘dare to dream’ but the support so far has been remarkable.  I am the only cyclist from the Northern Territory and yet I feel very supported, both from the team itself and JDRF.

Since I am a late starter, I think the fundraising will be most difficult, although I have a solid ‘last minute’ plan for fundraising with quite a few good ideas that will no doubt get me over the line and more.  In saying that, I don’t expect the 900kms to be a ‘walk in the park’.  I’m sure there will be times that I will question my decision to take on the challenge, however knowing the effort/pain is going to make a difference to the lives of T1Ds will be encouraging.  I will be mindful that my pain and discomfort has an end; unlike type 1 diabetics who face challenges every day of their lives!

I have already launched my everydayhero fundraising page on Facebook and shared with family and friends.

Debbie hails from Alice Springs

I have also launched my ‘corporate’ campaign targeting local businesses, government agencies and service clubs in Alice Springs and Central Australia.  I have a Fun Run planned along the banks of the Todd River for Saturday 25 March with support from the Alice Springs Running and Walking Club, and a good old Bunnings BBQ booked for Easter Sunday in April.  I am excited to say I will also be raffling an indigenous designed ‘dot painted’ bike helmet. I will be bringing this on the Type 1 Challenge with me to sell tickets along the way, and will draw the winner in the Barossa during the One Ride weekend.  I have also organised a ‘live cross’ daily during the cycle with our local community radio station ABC783, so locals and supporters can learn firsthand of my progress, both with the cycle and fundraising totals.

To anyone considering supporting the Type 1 Challenge or One Ride, I would say this: “The things you do for yourself are gone when you are gone, but the things you do for others remain as your legacy’!

You can support Debbie on her Type 1 Challenge journey via her fundraising page

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