Renata Souza on designing an insulin kit specifically for children with diabetes

"Children with type 1 diabetes are insulin-dependent. The administration of it is crucial to their survival."

Roughly two years ago, Renata's seven year old cousin, Thomas was diagnosed with diabetes. Coming from a very close family, the Mexican product designer says the news hit the family hard especially in how this would change Thomas' life.

"Imagine if I tell you that starting today, you have to really cut back on your candy and inject yourself, not once but up to five times a day... oh, and keep the needle inside your body for about ten seconds. This is the news that chilren with diabetes encounter," she says.

She says realising how much the disease was stealing from Thomas' childhood, in a way forcing him to grow up, "that's when I decided I wanted to design something for children with type 1 diabetes ... something fun, something they could look forward to, all while managing their condition."

The Parsons School of Design graduate's product, Thomy, is an insulin kit for children with type 1 diabetes.

"Children with type 1 diabetes are insulin-dependent. The administration of it is crucial to their survival," she says.

Thomy is an insulin kit designed to facilitate the administration of insulin into the body. The set consists of two components, temporary tattoos that help the patient to remember where they have already injected and an insulin pen designed specifically for a child's hand. 

Renata is one of the 20 young graduates who spoke at the inaugural Antenna event at Dutch Design Week last year. Thomy was also a national runner up in the James Dyson Awards. 

Design Indaba 2018 Conference Talks are presented in partnership with Liberty.  

More on product design and diabetes:

This device helps you manage insulin healthily 

Sweet Kills is a designer's impression of the dangers of diabetes

This tiny, smart patch could replace insulin shots