On Wednesday, the Nationals cut the ribbon on the Washington Nationals Diabetes Care Complex at Children’s National Medical Center. The complex is the result of a seven-year effort by the Dream Foundation, the team’s official charity arm.
“We started talking about this in 2006, long before the Dream Foundation even had a name,” said foundation Chair Marla Lerner Tanenbaum, who told me that the development process was educational for her. “I didn’t realize how invasive the disease was. It really opened my eyes to what the families go through.”
Gio Gonzalez, Adam LaRoche, Stephen Strasburg, Ryan Mattheus, Ross Detwiler and Chad Tracy attended the opening and spent time with some of the young patients. The baseball-themed facility will offer medical care and support for 1,650 children with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes and their families, as well as for children with cystic fibrosis-related diabetes and autoimmune-related illnesses, such as celiac and thyroid disease. It will also include an education center, where families can participate in simulation labs to learn about proper nutrition and physical exercise.