"I'm just a face for young people to say, 'You're not alone and you can achieve what you want to achieve,' " Garber tells PEOPLE

By Chancellor Agard
Updated December 08, 2020 10:41 AM
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Credit: Cate Cameron /The CW

The Flash star Victor Garber‘s heroic exploits aren’t limited to the small screen.

The newlywed recently started working with Beyond Type 1, a charity focused on raising awareness about Type 1 Diabetes that was co-founded by Nick Jonas.

Garber, 66, tells PEOPLE he was diagnosed with the incurable auto-immune disease when he was 12. By working with Beyond Type 1, he hopes to help clear up some of the confusion surrounding the disease (it’s often confused with Type 2 diabetes) and let those who have it know it’s still possible to be successful.

“I’m just a face for young people to say, ‘You’re not alone and you can achieve what you want to achieve,’ ” says Garber, who also notes that it is an erratic disease that can have very serious complications. “That’s really what I feel very strongly about, you are not defined by Type 1 diabetes.”

As of now, Garber hasn’t had a chance to work directly with Jonas, 23, because of his demanding schedule, but he’s looking forward to meeting and discussing how he and the musician turned actor turned activist can have even more of an impact together.

Elsewhere, it’s the health of Garber’s on-screen persona Professor Martin Stein that has Flash fans on the edge of their seats.

In the wake of Stein’s collapse at the end of last week’s episode, Team Flash is frantically searching for a new genetic match for Firestorm (the flame-throwing hero created when Stein uses the Firestorm matrix to merge with another person). They have to move quickly because Stein’s health is quickly deteriorating.

“He’s sort of on his last legs,” Garber teases of Tuesday’s episode. “Without this [new match], Stein won’t survive.”

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In the episode, Cisco (Carlos Valdes) and Caitlin (Danielle Panabaker) hold an “amusing” audition process and find Jefferson “Jax” Jackson (Franz Drameh), who will become part of the new Firestorm.

Finding a match the easy part. Now, Stein and Jax must learn how to work together, which won’t be easy, Garber teases. Drameh and Garber will eventually migrate over to the Arrow/Flash spin-off Legends of Tomorrow, which is expected to debut in early 2016.

“They go through a lot,” said the Alias alum. “When we get to Legends, you’ll see that there’s a lot of conflict, which I think is really truthful and [is] what interested me in the project in the first place. You’ve got all these people that are working together, but it’s like a dysfunctional family. Jefferson and Stein are no exception to that.”

Filming is well under way for Legends of Tomorrow. According to Garber, this new show is “massive and chaotic and fascinating and wonderful.”

“It’s very demanding for everyone, and the good news is that everyone gets along really well and we enjoy each other’s company,” says Garber. “When it gets really grim at five in the morning, we’re all able to keep going and laughing.”

The Flash airs Tuesdays (8 p.m. ET) on The CW.