May 25 2015 | 7:00 PM

Diabetes Hope Foundation Empowers Youth to Live Successfully with Diabetes

Who: Diabetes Hope Foundation | What: Scholarship ceremony
Where: Toronto | WHEN: May 25th, 2015 , 7:00PM
More than 35 students will receive scholarships for post-secondary education; Youth Day 2015 kicks off unique mentorship program

MISSISSAUGA, ON, May 5, 2015 - When Diabetes Hope Foundation (DHF) was founded in 1999, the grassroots charity awarded scholarships to four outstanding students with diabetes. Since then, DHF has given out more than 540 scholarships as part of its mission to help and support youth living with diabetes.

This year, DHF is awarding 38 scholarships, including 35 in Ontario and 3 in British Columbia, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland. The program recognizes exceptional youth who have been successful in managing their diabetes, while also excelling in academic, sports and community development.

“For over 17 years, the Diabetes Hope Foundation Scholarship Program has provided hope, opportunity and inspiration to 548 young adults living with diabetes from across the country,” said Barbara Pasternak, chair of Diabetes Hope Foundation. “Now more than a decade later, I am so proud to see that youth from every scholarship year have come back to ‘pay it forward’ to the next generation of type 1 youth.”

The awards will be given out at the Evening of Hope scholarship ceremony, which takes place on May 25, 2015 at the Isabel Bader Theatre in Toronto. The event is hosted by DHF’s alumni committee, whose members are dedicated to giving back to an organization that has helped them excel in many aspects of their lives.

Jade Allen, alumni committee vice-chair and a social worker, said Diabetes Hope Foundation has given her many empowering experiences since receiving the scholarship in 2005. “DHF has helped me develop into the person I am today and helped me foster a network of diabetes support in the community,” she said. “I’ve been able to excel with my diabetes and appreciate the good the disease has brought into my life.”

The full list of 2015 scholarship recipients can be found on the DHF website:

The awards ceremony caps the Foundation’s Alumni Weekend, which features the 5th annual Youth Leadership & Development Day. The event, which takes place at the University of Toronto’s Medical Sciences Centre, will feature leadership training workshops and networking opportunities for young adults living with diabetes. Amanda Coschi, a 2010 alumni student who is now a registered nurse and diabetes educator, will be a keynote speaker.

Youth Day is also the kick-off event for DHF’s Alumni Mentorship Program. The program matches first-year students with mentors from the Foundation’s alumni based on similar academic and social backgrounds. A first of its kind in the diabetes community, the mentorship program assists students in their transition to campus life and adult diabetes care.   Through peer role-modelling, mentoring and peer-to-peer interactions, mentors aim to inspire young adults with diabetes to achieve better long-term health outcomes.


Diabetes Hope Foundation ( was created in 1999 by the current chair, Barbara Pasternak, who has three children, two of whom live with type 1 insulin dependent diabetes. As her boys grew and made their way through the medical system, Barbara became acutely aware of gaps in the health care system for youth with diabetes.

Diabetes Hope Foundation was created to fill that gap and help families struggling with the financial and emotional challenges of children living with diabetes. Our programs reward, empower and provide peer education and support for youth in transition to enable them to live successfully WITHIN and BEYOND diabetes.

Diabetes Hope Foundation

6150 Dixie Road, Unit 1
Mississauga, ON
L5T 2E2

Barbara Pasternak

T: 905 670 0557