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June 16, 2024

Running the NY Marathon for type-1 diabetes research

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On November 5 Georgie Collis will be in New York to run the 2023 marathon. Photo supplied

Southern Cross University student Georgie Collis has type-1 diabetes but this won’t stop her running in the New York Marathon in November to raise funds for research.

At the end of New York’s spring Georgie will fulfil her personal goal of running in the New York Marathon and in doing so will raise much-needed funds for JDRF – the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, the world’s largest funder of type 1 diabetes research.

As an avid advocate for diabetes awareness and support, Georgie will run the course with the backing of her family, university and community – and hopes to have reached her fundraising goal of USD $4,000 (about AUD $6,300).

Diabetes as a baby

Collis says the cause is really close to her heart. ‘As someone who has had diabetes since the age of one, I’ve never known life without it. I’ve fundraised every year in Australia as part of the walk for a cure, but to be invited to run as part of the JDRF Team at a major event like the New York Marathon to raise money towards finding a cure is a dream come for me.’

Georgie became passionate about running in her 20s and hasn’t let her diagnosis hold her back from reaching milestone after milestone.

Having competed twice before as part of Team Southern Cross University at the Gold Coast Marathon, running through the Big Apple will be Georgie’s introduction to an international circuit.

Digging deep

‘I’ll be travelling to New York and will meet the team right before the race. I’m sure there’ll be times on the marathon day that I’m struggling a bit and I’ll need to dig deep on my own, but that when all those words of encouragement really come back to the forefront, and remind me why I’m running.

‘Having diabetes means there’s a bit of extra effort and preparation before a race – I always try to eat beforehand and am prepared with extra lollies and sports gel for during the run. I always have my sensor on, which reads my blood sugar during the race to make sure it doesn’t get too low.

Collis says her family has always encouraged me to go after my dreams and to never let diabetes stop me. ‘I hope I can encourage other people that this condition shouldn’t hold you back from anything.’

Bachelor of Occupational Therapy

Georgie is in her second year of the Bachelor of Occupational Therapy (OT) with an Indigenous Health major at Southern Cross, and is will work in a person-centred healthcare role.

‘I’m definitely a people-person and so I chose to study OT because it’s such a holistic way to help people by looking at all the different elements in their life – their social support, their environment, their body and mind and how you can best help them to regain function or gain function for the first time. When I graduate, I’d really like to work in a hospital setting in a multidisciplinary team.’

To donate towards Georgie’s New York Marathon fundraiser please visit:
scu.edu.au/georgie.


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