WDAY: The News Leader

Published October 29, 2011, 07:27 PM

Step-Out Walk to Stop Diabetes Grows in Grand Forks

Grand Forks, ND (WDAY TV) -- The Step Out Walk to Stop Diabetes continues to grow in Grand Forks.

By: Meagan Millage, WDAZ, WDAY

Grand Forks, ND (WDAY TV) -- The Step Out- Walk to Stop Diabetes continues to grow in Grand Forks.

This year's is likely to raise 60-thousand dollars for the American Diabetes Association. For those with the disease, every dollar counts.

Team Dia-Beat-Its has been active with the Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes in Grand Forks since its start three years ago. Members know first-hand the daily struggles this disease can bring.

Melissa Clark, Team Dia-Beat-Its: "I've noticed a huge difference in the 21 years of dealing with it myself. As a child it was very difficult for our family to change the lifestyle. Giving your child a shot, I can't even imagine."

Melissa Clark has Type 1 Diabetes. Recently her dad was diagnosed with Type 2.

Melissa Clark, Team Dia-Beat-Its: "I always compare it to the way cancer can take someone's life. I mean, it slowly can kill you and I don't know that people understand the issues that come alone with it."

That's why this walk raises awareness in the community. The American Diabetes Association focuses on diabetes research, education and advocacy.

Stephanie Chimeziri, ND American Diabetes Association Director: "so funds that we raise at events like Step Out they go to find a cure. We're hoping to find a cure, so research for that. But also to improve their everyday lives until we have that cure."

Today's walk is proof that diabetes affects thousands right here in North Dakota. And for those that have the disease, seeing so many people come out in support gives them hope.

Melissa Clark: "It's exciting. Even from last year to this year, and the increase that has happened, so hopefully next year we'll have a bigger team and raise more money."

To donate, go to diabetes dot org.