Image: Nick Jonas
Mary Ellen Matthews
Nick Jonas "Give Back, Simply Win" contest
NBC News
updated 8/18/2010 11:42:04 AM ET 2010-08-18T15:42:04

Cause Celeb highlights a celebrity’s work on behalf of a specific cause. This week, we speak with musical performer Nick Jonas about his work supporting people with diabetes. Jonas is founder of the charity “Change for Children,” a foundation that works to support programs that motivate and inspire children who are facing adversity. Jonas was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes when he was 13.

Interviewed by Hannah Ferreri

Q: How does your charity, “Change for Children,” provide support for people with diabetes?

Jonas: First of all, spreading awareness. Trying to get people out. There are lots of people that are used to dealing with this [diabetes] every single day and it doesn’t take a lot to also do what you can to help. There are things out there that can support people, like money for research and technology that can help people to live with diabetes.

Q: What’s your favorite thing about your involvement with Change for Children?

Jonas: I think the best thing is being able to speak with people and having them talk about what they are going through. I do what I can to help — providing some encouragement and support for what can be a really tough battle.

Q: Have you thought about using your music as a medium for diabetes activism?

Jonas: I’ve written a couple songs about my fight with diabetes. I’ve been able to sing ‘em, and see the response from the fans too. I think they’re really touched by my honesty in the songs.

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Q: What more would you like to share about your charity and/or diabetes?

Jonas: Well right now we have something really exciting going on with my partnership with Bayer Diabetes Care. It’s basically called Give Back. Simply Wins contest, where people can go onto the website and basically answer a few questions about what they’re doing to help with diabetes. It’s going to be a really exciting contest. They’ll get to meet me and then Bayer will donate $5,000 to three different nonprofit organizations. (Editor's note: The contest closed Aug. 5. Jonas announces the winners in September.)

Q: Have there been any recent developments in knowledge about how to fight or treat diabetes?

Jonas: I think there are new breakthroughs everyday. As long as we keep pressing through, and keep trying to do what we can to make a difference, then we’ll get there. We will make that difference. Hopefully it will happen soon — maybe we’ll see it in new technology, like the Contour USB meter that I use. We’ll keep our hopes up, and keep doing what we can to help out.

Interviewed by Hannah Ferreri

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