Ellsworth girl with type 1 diabetes shares story with D.C. lawmakers

WASHINGTON, D.C. (WABI) - A 9-year-old girl from Ellsworth who's tackling life with type 1 diabetes is sharing her story with lawmakers in Washington.

Lydia Bryant, here on the right, met face-to-face with Senator Susan Collins and other congressional leaders.

So did 9-year-old Ruby Anderson of Yarmouth.

They are part of the JDRF Children's Congress.

Every two years, more than 160 children with type 1 diabetes meet in D.C. to raise awareness and push for continued funding for research.

Lydia and Ruby are among millions of diabetics grappling with the exorbitant cost of insulin.

Lydia hopes letting lawmakers know what it's like to live with the disease will make a difference.

Lydia says, "I feel like more people will realize diabetes is a big danger to kids."

Collins says, "The personal stories of these children with diabetes are so important. They put a human face on a very difficult, lifelong disease. They are more powerful than statistics or even medical studies or academic reviews."

Collins founded the Senate Diabetes Caucus more than two decades ago.

Funding for the Special Diabetes Program is set to expire at the end of September.

Collins says the Senate Health Committee has okayed a five-year extension of the program.

Now the money for it needs to be approved.