Multisport athlete Emily Wilson and her new friend Jerry the Bear are on their way to Hamilton and you are invited to join them for a special Teddy Bear's Picnic on Sunday at Enderley Park.
Emily is a 26-year-old multisport athlete and avid outdoor enthusiast, who is also a type 1 diabetic.
Jerry is a special teddy bear who, like Emily has type 1 diabetes. Jerry has been specially designed as a comfort and educational tool for kids with type 1 diabetes.
During November, Diabetes NZ will be giving a Jerry the Bear to children aged four to 10 who have been newly diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.
He has a number of embroidered patches that link with a smartphone app so that children can feed him, give him insulin and look after his wellbeing, all while learning how to manage their own condition.
Emily - a diabetes ambassador - set out on November 1 taking Jerry on a journey the length of New Zealand, travelling by bike, kayak, raft, by foot or swimming from Cape Reinga to Bluff.
She will stop at various locations along the way to talk to people about type 1 diabetes. In Hamilton the Teddy Bear's Picnic is on Sunday from 11.30am to 2.30pm at Enderley Park in Hamilton East.
Diabetes Youth Waikato invites anyone interested to come along for a sausage sizzle, a talk and a demonstration. There will be games, a bouncy castle and a whole afternoon of fun.
Children are encouraged to bring their own teddies, a friend and a picnic to enjoy. Emily's focus will be on Know the Difference and she hopes Jerry will help young and old better understand type 1 and know the difference between type one and type two diabetes.
"My message is that diabetes should not stop you from doing what you want to do," says Emily.
Emily is the current International Diabetes Federation Young Leader for New Zealand.
November is Diabetes Action Month - an annual campaign to educate the public around diabetes as a major health issue that affects almost a quarter of a million New Zealanders.