Ice princess beats the odds

diabetes is not an obstacle for nina
diabetes is not an obstacle for nina

The 14-year-old figure skater was selected to support next month’s Disney on Ice at the Perth Arena.

Nina said she was extremely proud to learn she had been selected after figure skating competitively for five years.

‘I was so excited. I found out last week, I got an email and I was so happy because it’s something that I’ve wanted to do for such a long time,’ she said.

The Iona Presentation College student said although it was sometimes problematic to continually monitor and treat her condition, she did not allow it to stop her from pursuing what she loved.

‘It doesn’t have to stop you and it shouldn’t stop you from doing anything, and especially with exercise,’ she said.

‘It’s one of the most important parts of managing your diabetes.

‘In sport you have to stop and check your levels, and I have to work with a sports specialist to figure out when to take sugar so I don’t go low and have to stop training.

‘But it definitely shouldn’t stop people.’

Rebecca Johnson, from the Telethon Juvenile Diabetes Family Centre in Osborne Park, said she had met Nina at a diabetes focus group and was inspired by her hard work and positive attitude.

‘Kids should really understand that this is a tough gig, but they can still live a really rich and wonderful life with,’ Ms Johnson said.

‘I think that’s a story that somebody like Nina really captures well.’

Ms Johnson said it was important for young people to understand that if diabetes was managed well, they could do anything.

‘It’s tough, it’s challenging, it’s a really tough metabolic condition, but it’s something that I think can make you smarter, stronger, more resilient,’ she said.

Ms Johnson said she hoped the new Juvenile Diabetes Family Centre ” due to open early next year ” would provide a space where children and families could get together and learn from one another.

‘I think it can be a facility that allows those connections to happen and encourages them… and really starts that collective voice that inspires other kids with type one to take a big bite out of life,’ she said.