Pump Girls Change Type 1 Diabetes
February 1998, Brittany Rausch, 12, and her mother came up with an idea for a skit that she could perform at a diabetes camp in Southern California sponsored by the Pediatric-Adolescent Diabetes Research and Education Foundation (PADRE). With a group of other girls she met at the camp, Rausch put together a song and dance routine to the "The Barbie Song," and it was a big hit with the other campers.
The director at the PADRE camp, discovered something special in the way the girls harmonized, and told her friend about the skit. Her friend just happened to be noted Hollywood record producer and songwriter HB Barnum, who got Rausch, Janelle Munion, Colleen Cottrell and Sara Cronstedt into a Southern California recording studio in January.
The Pump Girls were born!
They can sing, they can dance, and they can do their own carb-counting. They're The Pump Girls, a diabetes singing sensation, and they do "care about you."
If you haven't heard or seen the Pump Girls you probably haven't been watching much television lately. They've been on every network and just about every channel in every city in America, including The Today Show on NBC and Hollywood Extra, among others. Their CD 'We're The Pump Girls' was released in March of last year in a widely-publicized debut held at Children's Hospital of Los Angeles. Coverage included the four major networks, CNN,
Telemundo and a music program from the United Kingdom.
'We Care About You' was written by their producer, H.B. Barnum, who doesn't have diabetes himself, but knows "too many people" as he says, who have the disease. He wrote the song after discussions with the girls, as an anthem to people with diabetes around the world, all of whom are linked by this common
factor - "something inside." It's not as punchy as the girls' signature song 'We're The Pump Girls' but is certainly as moving.
And they do care. The Pump Girls all have Type 1 diabetes, and all care about bringing the message to the world that diabetes is a big problem - but there are big solutions, too.
Colleen Cottrell, 13, is the "power voice" of the group . You'll notice her great vocal work on the song 'We're Having A Party.' "I believe," says Colleen, "that everyone has at least one good quality. So everybody can become a role model for someone else." Her advice to others with big dreams is, "When you make a decision or have a goal, don't think about it too much.
Just go after it!"
Sarah Ann Carey is 12 years old and lives in Orange County. She is the youngest and newest Pump Girl! "What I like best about being in the group is traveling across the country spreading the word about diabetes and the pump. I like knowing that I'm giving kids and teens more self-confidence about having diabetes. "She enjoys shopping, and hanging out with friends. Her advice, "When you feel like giving up, just hang on and you'll get through
Brittany Rausch, 12, is the youngest of The Pump Girls. Brittany likes "hanging out with her Pump Girl pals, Sara, Janelle and Colleen." She likes to act, sing, write and draw. Julie Andrews is her idol and "Go towards your goal" is Brittany's motto.
The girls actively participate in the PADRE (Pediatric Adolescent DiabetesResearch and Education) Foundation activities, but now find themselves the stars of the events, rather than just attendees.
"People from all over the world know who they are. And they really are making a difference." It was PADRE who brought the girls to the attention of music producer H.B. Barnum when the girls were not much more than a skit created at a diabetes camp. She realized the potential and had H.B. talk to them. H.B., who was musical director for Aretha Franklin, has worked with a wide array of popular artists including Prince, Barry White, and Puff Daddy.
But the girls are still just girls. And like a lot of the other kids at the PADRE Foundation, they appreciate the difference the organization has made in their lives. From its home base at Children's Hospital of Orange County, the PADRE Foundation provides a wide range of services for children with diabetes. These services include several monthly support groups, education programs and charitable donation programs for children with diabetes and their families. In addition, the PADRE Foundation supports research which is aimed toward improved detection, prevention, and treatment of diabetes in children, and ultimately a cure for type 1 diabetes.
To read more about the the Pump Girls and the PADRE Foundation visit: