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Andover girl raises, donates money to JDFR


A Farragut Intermediate School student held her second lemonade stand fund-raiser, Saturday, July 14, to raise money for Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, with the hope they find a cure.

Chesney Harrison, a rising fifth-grader, said, “I wanted to help find a cure for juvenile diabetes, because my mom has had it for 40 years, and I’ve had it for five.”

Chesney said she got the idea from her mother, Jayne Harrison.

“She’s always wanted and loved doing lemonade stands; that’s just something she’s always enjoyed,” Jayne said. “Of course she’s been diagnosed with the disease, and I’ve been diagnosed with it also; and I said, ‘we want a cure, don’t we. We need to just do it to help find a cure.’”

Chesney said her hope is, with the help of the money she raises, the foundation will be able to find a cure.

“[With the money I donate], they’ll get to buy supplies to help find [a cure],” she said.

The stand isn’t all work, Chesney said; “I like [doing lemonade stands,] because it’s entertaining and really fun to do.”

In addition, donating the money makes her feel good about herself.

“It feels better than keeping it for yourself,” she added.

Chesney’s friends, who came to help her with the lemonade stand, agreed.

Angela Waldorf, also a rising fifth-grader at FIS, said, “I wanted to help out my best friend, because it is the right thing to do. It’s for a good cause, plus I feel like I’m helping her out.”

She added, “I think [Chesney’s] a really good person.”

Sheena Qualls, a rising fourth-grader at FIS, said she came to help, because “I wanted to help everybody that’s a diabetic.”

Chesney’s neighbor, 9-year-old Jake Poczobut, said, “I am here to help. I’ve been here every time she’s done a lemonade stand.”

Chesney’s lemonade stand raised $416.89, which she donated during the Hope-a-Thon, a fund-raiser held Sunday, July 15, co-sponsored by East Tennessee Children’s Hospital.

“I want to thank Andover Place [subdivision]. They have been so supportive of her,” Jayne said. “It’s kind of hard to thank strangers and people going in and out. We just don’t know how to thank everybody.”

Chesney said she remembers the night, in 2003, when she was diagnosed.

“My mom woke me up in the middle of the night and took me the doctor’s office. They had to stick a really big needle into my arm,” she said. “I was getting dehydrated and I needed water really quick, and I wouldn’t drink. I was screaming.”

Jayne said her daughter tries to live life as normal as possible.

“Anything can change your blood sugar: stress or excitement, but she generally tries to live as much of a normal life as she can. She has to check her blood, making sure she eats the right amount of carbs. If her sugar gets high she feels lousy. If it gets low, it can be really very dangerous,” she said. “If you’re not in good control, several years later you can have complications like blindness, kidney failure, heart disease.”

Chesney wears an insulin pump to help keep her diabetes under control.

“She got the [insulin] pump six months after she was diagnosed,” Jayne said.

“I have to disconnect my pump whenever I go into water,” Chesney said. “I have to prick my fingers, which have a lot of little dots on them. I have to change my tubing, which is very difficult.”

Like many little girls, Chesney said she wants to “be a singer, fight hunger and make the world a better place,” in addition to finding a cure for juvenile diabetes.

For more information about Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, visit their Web site at www.jdf.org.

 

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