A CHARITY founded by a Scottish teen has been awarded £30,000 in its bid to highlight the challenges faced by young people living with Type 1 diabetes.

The funding to Lochlan’s Legacy has come from the Young Start Fund, which is awarding a total of £2,004,741 to 24 youth-orientated organisations across Scotland this year.

Lochlan Murdoch, from Cumnock, started the charity at 11, after struggling to manage his diabetes at the height of lockdown.

Murdoch, now 14, said: “I just let go of my own care, but you never get the day off from diabetes. Knowing how bad it can get spurred me on to help other young people in my position who may be struggling with their diagnosis and to let them know they are not alone.”

The Young Start Fund was established in 2012 to support young people aged between eight to 24 to realise their full potential. Youth-orientated projects, such as Logan’s Legacy, can receive up to £100,000 in funding as part of the scheme.

Other award recipients this year include Scottish Disability Sport, which received £100,000 towards its youth sports coaching and leadership qualifications and Feeling Strong, a Dundee-based youth mental health charity, which received £99,987 in funding.

Lochlan’s Legacy will use its award to facilitate four educational roadshows in Ayrshire, targeted at young people with Type 1 diabetes, as well as their friends, and family.

It's estimated that in Scotland around 2500 children and young people are living with Type 1 diabetes, and managing the condition can be extremely complex.

The autoimmune condition results in the body not being able to produce insulin, which is required to move glucose out of the blood and into the cells to be used for energy.

Left untreated, this can lead to severe complications including damage to blood vessels, nerves and organs.

In most cases managing the condition requires daily insulin injections, as well as adhering to strict dietary requirements to maintain balanced glucose levels. For Lochlan’s mum, Lesley Murdoch, co-founder and chair of Lochlan’s Legacy, this can put an immense strain on the young person.

She said: “The day-to-day management of Type 1 diabetes brings a multitude of struggles and it’s estimated that someone living with Type 1 diabetes must make 180 additional decisions every day.

“For anyone, that’s a huge task, but imagine how that feels for a child – to have to be constantly aware of their health, medication, food intake, blood levels, etc – not to be able to live a carefree life as every child should.”

In addition to the roadshows, the charity will use its funding to train its youth ambassadors to spread awareness of Type 1 diabetes. The cohort is composed of young people, aged between 12-18, who will share their experience of living with the condition.

The charity’s efforts have been praised by Kate Still, The National Lottery Community Fund’s Scotland chair, who said: “Lochlan’s Legacy is a shining example of what the Young Start fund is all about – services both for and by young people.

“Lochlan has been through so much difficulty already at such a young age and it’s inspiring to see him turn that into such strength and dedication to improving the lives of other young people.”