Spare a Rose, Save a Child

This Valentine's Day, give the gift of insulin

BennetArticle By Bennet Dunlap

Insulin is life.

That is the simple equation for children diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Sadly, for many children around the world, the access to insulin is anything but simple. The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) says, "Lack of access to insulin remains the most common cause of death in a child with diabetes," (Gale, 2006). The estimated life expectancy of a child who has just developed diabetes could be less than a year in some areas (Beran et al, 2005)."[i] The diabetes community is trying to help make getting insulin to kids a little easier.

This Valentine's Day people with diabetes are going on line (and offline too) with a personal campaign help save children. The effort is called Spare a Rose, Save a Child. The idea is simple; buy one less rose this Valentine's Day and donate the value of that flower to children with diabetes. The International Diabetes Federation has a sustainable effort to help children around the world called Life for a Child. They estimate that five US dollars provides one month of life for child.

A lovely box of long stemmed rose can easily run past $60. One rose then is about five dollars. The math then works out to one rose, one month of life. A dozen roses, a year of life for a child with diabetes. Jeff Hitchcock, founder of Children with Diabetes said, "I don't think I'll ever be able to look at a dozen roses the same way again."

In addition to giving, at the Spare a Rose, Save a Child site, individuals can find images and resources to share the campaign. Printouts on the site called "Certificates of Awesome," are said to be, "Even groovier than a store bought card," to print out and give, "with your Valentine's Day flowers to let your sweetie know you're both Sparing A Rose to Save a Child."

Kerri Sparling, of the SixUntilMe blog offered her hopes for the campaign saying, "Spare a Rose last year was met with great enthusiasm from the Diabetes Online Community; in fact, we raised over $3,000 in just one week! This year, we hope even more people – both within and outside of the DOC – will participate so we can build on last year's success."

Join Jeff, Kerri, myself and may others in the diabetes community by going to to give and learn more to share about the campaign.


Read Bennet's bio here.
Read more of Bennet's columns.

NOTE: The information is not intended to be a replacement or substitute for consultation with a qualified medical professional or for professional medical advice related to diabetes or another medical condition. Please contact your physician or medical professional with any questions and concerns about your medical condition.

Last Modified Date: February 12, 2014

All content on is created and reviewed in compliance with our editorial policy.
  1. International Diabetes Federation. The Programme. (Accessed 02/2014).

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