Racheal* is a single mother of two children, both with intellectual disabilities.
Jamie*, 11, has severe autism, anxiety and is non-verbal which means he needs high levels of care.
Racheal’s eldest child, Katie*, is thirteen and has an intellectual disability. She also has type 1 diabetes. She requires daily insulin injections to ensure her blood sugar levels remain stable.
Katie shows no physical signs when her blood sugar drops ie. hypo. She is unable to communicate when she begins to feel unwell and feels a hypo coming on. This is a very dangerous situation for Katie. If her blood sugar drops too low it can be life threatening.
Katie needs to test her blood sugar regularly during the day. When Katie was diagnosed with diabetes her dependence on Racheal increased. This made it difficult for Katie to socialise and take part in the community.
Doctors suggested the Dexcom mobile app. Dexcom is a small sensor that measures glucose levels just underneath the skin. A transmitter sends data to a mobile phone and alerts users when blood sugar levels are abnormal. To use this device Katie needed a smart phone. When Katie’s old phone broke, Racheal had no idea how she was going to pay for a new one.
Having two children with special needs, it is impossible for Racheal to work. She relies on a carers pension … there was no money for a new smart phone!
Racheal applied for a new phone through the NDIS, but they were unable to help her. So Racheal came to Hobart City Mission. Through your support we were able to help this struggling mum provide Katie with a much needed phone.
The independence this has given Katie is amazing. She can now attend sporting events, visit family members and do things with her friends. Racheal is confident in the knowledge that she can monitor Katie’s blood sugar levels through the app.
“Having this app and a new phone has been life-changing”, says Racheal.
“It gives Katie access to the community that she wouldn’t have otherwise. Her support workers can feel comfortable taking her out and about”.
Katie now goes on regular outings with support workers. They have access to the app and are alerted when her levels become abnormal. Teacher Aides that supervise Katie at school are also able to monitor her levels via the app.
At night Racheal is alerted by an alarm if Katie’s glucose levels drop. She no longer needs to be up during the night pricking Katie’s finger and testing the blood to ensure her levels are safe.
This family now sleeps much better at night because of the support you have provided.
Racheal and Katie asked us to say “thank you” for your kindness and generosity.
* Names changed and model used for privacy reasons.