Six Years Strong: FHC Junior Raises Funds for Friends of Children

Posted on 09/18/2020
Emma Sieveking wearing her six years strong t-shirt

Six years strong. Those words hold great meaning and pride for FHC junior Emma Sieveking. They represent six years since she was diagnosed with Type 1 Juvenille Diabetes and six years of not letting the disease stop her from embracing life. To honor her determined battle with diabetes, Emily organized a “24 miles in 24 hours” challenge and raised money for the FHSD Friends of Children fund.

Just two weeks after Sieveking received her diagnosis in 2014, she started public school for the first time at Francis Howell. “It was really nerve-wrecking adjusting to a different environment and then coming in with a brand new disability,” said Sieveking. Thankfully, she found an incredible support system at FHSD that helped her manage the new situation.

Now six years later, Sieveking gathered a small group of some of her greatest supporters to run 24 miles in 24 hours. After setting up a GoFundMe page, where others could donate and sponsor the runners, the group was able to raise over $1,000 for the Friends of Children fund.

The charity, which is administered by the Francis Howell Education Association (FHEA), exists to provide necessary supplies for Francis Howell students to participate and succeed in school, and funds to assist families in financial crisis with food, children’s clothing, children’s medical care, and expenses related to shelter and safety.

Sieveking chose to raise money for Friends of Children as a way to give back to the community that supported her. She also desired to help kids who may be in similar health situations as her, but may not have the same access to necessary medicine.

“Many diabetics ration their insulin because of financial issues, lack of insurance, and the astronomical cost of insulin and supplies,” said Sieveking. “I was really excited when I heard that Friends of Children would actually be helping people right around me with funds for their medicine.”

Francine Hill, FHEA Vice President and Friends of Children Chair, was inspired by Sieveking’s thoughtfulness for her community.

“Words cannot describe how grateful Friends of Children is to Emma for her generous donation,” said Hill. “She is a role model for future generations and she shows that one person can make a difference and change people’s lives.”

Even though Sieveking faces challenges with her diabetes every day, she is just as unstoppable as she was six years ago.

“Nothing, not even a disease or disability should ever stop anyone from dreaming or reaching their dreams,” said Sieveking.

She hopes that her donation and the support of Friends of Children can remind other students that “anything is possible with the right mindset and having the right people in your corner.”

To donate to the Friends of Children fund, please visit the charity’s GoFundMe page. FHSD Employees can fill out a Payroll Deduction Authorization Form to donate.

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