New program in Corner Brook helps send diabetic youth to camp

Cory Hurley
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Hailey Colbourne, and her mom Corina, stand next to one of the Clothesline drop boxes now found in the city.

CORNER BROOK  Hailey Colbourne is a typical 12-year-old who experiences the usual highs and lows of pre-teenage life.

There’s the highs of art and music, and the lows of the nervousness about starting junior high school in September.

Her mom, Corina, is the typical mother of a 12-year-old girl. There’s the highs of seeing her daughter’s love of art and music, and the lows of having her little girl growing up too fast.

But there are also highs and lows for these two that are not so typical. They involve Hailey’s blood sugars.

Hailey was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at the age of 7. She was admitted to hospital in September 2008 with a blood-glucose level of just 19. She was there for a week, and began taking needles.

Today, she monitors the disease well, and uses an insulin pump. She doesn’t let her disease slow her down, already trying her hand in sports like basketball. When she enrolls at G.C. Rowe next year, it will be crafts, band, and regular gym classes like every other child.

Diabetes impacts almost 55,000 people living in Newfoundland and Labrador, the highest in Canada.

Although Hailey has attended regular summer camps away from her parents, regulating and monitoring her own diabetes was a big worry for mom and dad.

So, Camp Douwanna was just the thing for both Hailey and her parents.

The camp at Lion Max Simms Memorial Camp in Bishop’s Falls has the swimming, sports and games that every young girl enjoys. But, it also has the medical expertise and leadership that puts worried parents at ease.

Hailey has attended the camp four times, including this summer.

“I enjoy the games,” she said. “We do relay races and have water fights.”

Corina also recognizes the value in the camp.

“As a parent, I can ask her how she feels, but I don’t really know,” she said. “Somebody else with diabetes would be able to tell you.”

These camps found across the country are supported through the Canadian Diabetes Association. It is just one of the many services provided by the national organization through programs like Clothesline.

Large red drop boxes are strategically placed at city businesses where gently used clothing, electronics and small household items can be placed. They are then sold to Value Village, and the Canadian Diabetes Association puts the money toward its advocacy, research and programs.


New program in Corner Brook

This week, the program began in Corner Brook. Red boxes can be found at 10 businesses throughout the city — Veitch’s Ultramar, Castle Carpets and Flooring, Home Hardware, two Stan Dawe Ltd. locations, three Colemans stores, the Corner Brook Plaza, and Corner Brook Garage.

Corner Brook residents can now help the environment and people living with diabetes — without spending a dime.

Corina sees the program as a significant advancement in Corner Brook, not only because it helps fund diabetes camps, but it helps raise awareness about the disease throughout the community.

“It is something that puts diabetes out there,” she said. “A lot more people should have an understanding of what it is, and how serious it can be.”

Operating across Canada since 1985, each year the program diverts more than 46 million kilograms of clothing, household and electronic items from landfills.

Trevor Edwards, regional director for eastern Canada, said the association is always looking for ways to expand the program. In Newfoundland and Labrador, the program has been operating out of St. John’s.

“It increases our collection potential, which in turn increases the revenue that goes to support the mission for the Canadian Diabetes Association,” he said. “It also gives donors the opportunity to support the Canadian Diabetes Association in an environmentally friendly way that costs them nothing.”

Edwards said there was great support from the business community, with little trouble finding business owners willing to lend a space to put the bins.

For more information about the Clothesline program, including what types of items are accepted in the new drop boxes, residents can call 1-800-505-5525 or visit

Organizations: Canadian Diabetes Association

Geographic location: Corner Brook Plaza, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada.Although Hailey Canada Value Village

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Recent comments

  • nel
    August 20, 2013 - 21:13

    For those , who need some education on diabetes and stigma , shared by me , a person living with type 1 diabetes since 1983 , initially misdiagnosed as a type 2 person with diabetes because I was 42 plus of age . I suggested to my GP to put me on insulin , because the meds did not lower my blood sugars .I suppose if a GP can make that error so can anyone without me pointing a finger at this audience :) ...and to top it off ..I have kept my girlish figure for many moons and more to come .

  • Lori Gilley
    August 20, 2013 - 06:58

    Well David, you may think u know a lot but you are wrong,I know a lot of people with diabetes.. and because you obviously don't have empathy for go away!!

    • david
      August 20, 2013 - 16:16

      I know a guy who owns some cows. That doesn't make me a farmer.

    • dont buy it
      August 20, 2013 - 18:37

      Fur is natural. If you don't like it don't buy it. It's simple enough really. If enough people don't want it then no one will supply it. The problem with your synthetic option is that it will be around for decades and centuries - a pollution problem for your children and grandchildren to clean up. Now that's being a hypocrit.

  • David
    August 20, 2013 - 00:17

    I'm such a fool. In one post I say "Up to 45 percent of children with newly diagnosed diabetes have Type 2 diabetes". I wonder what the other 55% is but thinking makes my head hurt. So let me contradict myself and claim "90% of all diagnosed diabetes is Type 2". Is it 45% or 90%? I don't know, I'm rather clueless on most things I post. I just like to whine about things. A loser through and through.

    • david
      August 20, 2013 - 16:14

      Dear me: These statistics are not mine, and are annotated for source. They are neither inconsistent nor contradictory. Reading comprehension is vital to gaining knowledge (offer clearly void in Newfoundland).

  • George Tucker
    August 19, 2013 - 21:59

    Why is it that people like this character"David" who clearly lacks a great deal of knowledge and an even greater disrespect for the people with diabetics as well as the families who have to deal with the diabetic problems each and everyday, can openly help destroy all the work that has help enhance the well being of our diabetic people. It takes many hours of one on one with children to especially to build a good relationship so that these children can get an understanding of what the future holds for them. One major step is the Max Simms Diabetic camp which brings kids of many ages to together where they learn to grow and develop showing they are no different from kids without diabetic problems. Yes it is a challenge however every effort is being made to fit these children into normal society within our school systems.

    • Eli
      August 20, 2013 - 07:53

      That David is no doubt off the wall most times. But when the MNSB is proud of the hundreds of thousands of pop bottles and cans recycled every year even I get a message.

    • david
      August 20, 2013 - 08:16

      If my comments, which are based on facts and opinions consistent with the Canadian Diabetes Association, have "destroyed" all the work that has been done on this initiative, then it wasn't much of an idea, was it? Seems more logical to conclude that it might have been an ill-conceived, bad idea. Otherwise, any reasonable, rational, intelligent person would discount my ignorance on this and ignore my opinion....or are you questioning local people's intelligence and ability to think for themselves, George? That would be pretty arrogant of you, wouldn't it?

  • JB
    August 19, 2013 - 18:23

    For some reason I am thinking that David knows the difference but is trying to get a rise from people because i really can't see someone being that ignorant. As a mother with two diabectic children who one have been on all nl volleyball team, and one who has ran a half of marathon and on western basketball team i would like to inform you that my kids are fit and fitness and health have always been a big part of there lives, i can't believe i am entertaining this conversation but feel the need just in case you really don't know the difference.Diabetes Type 1 is not preventable, it is in no way the result of a person's lifestyle. Whether a person is fat, thin, fit or unfit, makes no difference to his or her risk of developing Type 1. In the case of Diabetes Type 2, much of its onset is the result of bodyweight, fitness and lifestyle. The vast majority of people who develop Type 1 are not overweight, and are otherwise healthy during onset. You cannot reverse or prevent Type 1 by doing lots of exercise or eating carefully. Quite simply, the Diabetes Type 1 patient has lost his/her beta cells. The beta cells are in the pancreas; they produce insulin. David in case you didn't know there really is a difference between type 1 and type 2. Have a nice day!

    • david
      August 20, 2013 - 08:30

      You're like the person who "heard" about a guy who drank a bottle of Scotch and smoked a daily cigar and died of old age as your rationalization for having a dozen beer and a pack of smokes every night. It is convenient irrationality. Terrible diets and sedentary lifestyles are causing an epidemic of juvenile diabetes. You can deny it, but you're sure going to pay for it. And if there's no money in the health care pot to take care of you when the time comes, I'll bet you'll rethink your stance on this shockingly preventable epidemic..

  • jake
    August 19, 2013 - 14:51

    Anybody like David who'd come on here mocking a diabetic is an idiot an absolute one should be blocked from the site.

  • Advocate
    August 19, 2013 - 11:01

    David, you are incorrect!!! Type 1 Diabetes is an autoimmune disease where an individuals immune system attacks its vital organ, which ultimately results in that organ malfunctioning. For T1D, the pancreas. T1D is not a result of poor diet and a unhealthy lifestyle!! How ignorant for you to imply this without the proper information. God bless your daughter Corina. Keep fighting, and know that you are never alone in your battle!!

    • david
      August 19, 2013 - 11:45

      see below.

    • Diabetes Advocacy
      August 19, 2013 - 12:37

      Diabetes Camps can be a very enriching experience for children living with diabetes. It is a chance for them to see others living their "normal" lives and make amazing friendships. To the person who feels that NL children with Type 1 diabetes should not be given this opportunity--shame on you. While NL does have a very high incidence of Type 2 diabetes (the inability to use insulin properly which can be linked to obesity AND genetics), Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that is also diagnosed at an exceptionally high in the province of NL. People living with diabetes are NOT to blame for their disease. Children living with Type 1 diabetes did not ask to be reliant on an external source of insulin for their life time. Supporting them and giving them the best training today will ensure that they are healthy active members of society tomorrow.

    • david
      August 19, 2013 - 13:59

      Sure it is. Lots of stuff is "enriching". But you seem to conveniently ignore the 'paying for it' part, a.k.a. the "impoverishing". All Newfoundlanders suffer from that perspective...funny that.

  • Ash
    August 19, 2013 - 07:58

    Actually David, people are diagnosed with type 1 diabetes because their bodies are not naturally able to produce insulin. It has absolutely nothing to do with lifestyle choices, and certainly isn't something that they've earned for themselves. In the case of type 1 diabetics, their pancreas doesn't produce insulin and can't break down the blood sugar in the body. What happens is the sugar accumulates in their blood and if it's left untreated causes severe damage to arteries, kidneys, etc...if the person doesn't slip into a diabetic coma in their sleep first. Camps like this don't "reward kids for bad lifestyle choices", they help teach kids to manage their disease and learn how to take care of their insulin and blood sugar levels so that they can go to school, get jobs one day, and--oh yeah--wake up every morning. And, for the record, thousands of people in NL with type 2 diabetes get the disease later in life due to a myriad of factors besides diet and exercise. If you're going to go around spouting off hatred from behind the safety of your own keyboard, you should at least educate yourself on it first. Ignorance is not an excuse.

    • david
      August 19, 2013 - 11:49

      90% of all diagnosed diabetes is Type 2. Your post is worse than useless. It is at best dangerously misleading. Go away.

  • Insulin user
    August 18, 2013 - 14:25

    Hope her Insulin-Pump is working well. Mine is not. Diabetics received information that the Reservoir was not up to European medical standards. Danger of getting too much or too little Insulin. (MADE IN MEXICO) That tells me everything. I have been taking Insulin now for more than 51 years. (The Insulin-Pump since nearly two years.)The Insulin Pump does make things easier. I can leave off many meals without any problems. My doctor is a Specialist for Diabetes. Sometimes in Newfoundland it is not easy to get real fresh vegetables and fruits. Many food items there have artificial flavour, artificial colour and many unnecessary chemicals etc. Avoid such so-called food items if at all possible.

  • david
    August 18, 2013 - 07:56

    "Diabetes impacts almost 55,000 people living in Newfoundland and Labrador, the highest in Canada." I'll give you one guess why.....guess correctly, and you win a free summer camp!

    • Mike
      August 19, 2013 - 10:57

      For type "2" it is often caused by the wrong food you are eating and lack of exercise too. Type "1" is a different story. I have read that some doctors think it might be some unknown VIRUS that attacks the pancreas. If many countries would give out less money for weapons and more for Diabetes Research then maybe we might find the answer.

    • Mike
      August 19, 2013 - 11:02

      If I WIN, then please give my "Free Summer Camp" to another young Diabetic in Newfoundland.

    • david
      August 19, 2013 - 12:29

      "Some doctors think".....there's no arguing something like that.

  • david
    August 17, 2013 - 17:00

    Sorry, but giving kids a "reward" like a summer camp for being diagnosed with diabetes --- a very avoidable disease stemming largely from poor diet and lack of exercise ---- is simply and completely wrong. There are children with diseases that cannot be prevented simply be lifestyle choices, yet they receive nothing. That there are so many childhood diabetes cases is nothing to reward or celebrate.

    • Arlene
      August 19, 2013 - 09:39

      Do you really mean to tell me you think diabetes in young children is preventable?. Get an education. My child was 2 when he was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. It had nothing to do with his lifestyle or sugar. They told me it came from an infection. All of the kids at camp have type 1 diabetes that is unpreventable. They have to live with people with your attitude all year so a camp where everyone understands your disease is a great thing for them.

    • david
      August 19, 2013 - 11:44

      Arlene: Sorry that your child has diabetes, but that fact should make you much more aware of the facts more than others: "Up to 45 percent of children with newly diagnosed diabetes have Type 2 diabetes and most are overweight or obese at diagnosis. This means that Type 2 is not only treatable, but preventable, with proper diet and exercise." ( ----- "More and more children are being diagnosed with diabetes, due to the increase in sedentary lifestyles and improper eating habits. However, genetics and environmental factors also thought to play contributing roles as well." (

  • RN
    August 17, 2013 - 15:57

    Note to the author of this article.. Typical blood sugar is between 4-6mmol/L, so "just 19" would actually be well above the normal range. Just a heads up:)