KANSAS CITY, Mo--- At just 10 years old, Caleb Scott doesn’t suffer from diabetes, but knows first hand the effects it can have.
“It runs in my family. My dad had diabetes but not anymore. But my grandmother, my great-grandfather, my great-grandmother, my aunt, my other aunt and my great-aunt, all have it," he said.
According to the American Diabetes Association, 700,000 Missourians have the disease along with 250,000 in Kansas. In the Show Me State, more than 150,000 people are in the dark that they have the illness.
Federal statistics show the disease disproportionately impacts African Americans nearly 80% more compared to their white counterparts.
Obesity is often a leading cause for the disease among blacks.
"It doesn't have to be like this. We can change it," James Nunnally said.
"I encountered diabetes later in life, and I saw two points of view, both as an executive and a patient, how disparaged and how disconnected the system of treating diabetics was," the Kansas City man said.
Not knowing where to turn to when he was first diagnosed, he wants to make sure no one else goes through that again.
This weekend, he’s hosting an event to not only bring those suffering from illnesses, but also bring doctors, experts, leaders and priceless resources together under one roof to connect and converse about the disease.
But he also wants to honor and thank those who are helping those battling the disease.
“Being a caregiver is the proudest accomplishment for me,” India Williams said.
She said she became the primary caregiver for her grandfather after he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Williams will be one of dozens honored for their sacrifice and dedication to care for loved ones.
"I'm really excited that there's a village out there that there are more caregivers out there and that we can be a support for one of another," Williams said.
"The major thing is eat healthy and second thing is work out and get fit because when you`re not fit, you'll stay out of shape, and when you`re out of shape, you don`t feel good," Scott said.
Nunnally hopes the conversation now won’t be necessary for when the next generation reaches his age.
His event is set for Saturday, Nov. 2 at the Gregg/Klice Community Center near 18th and Vine starting at 9 a.m.