Bezzy T2D community guide, Mila Clarke, shares her favorite ways to get involved in Diabetes Awareness Month.
November is Diabetes Awareness Month, and we want to make sure that everyone who lives with diabetes, and those who love someone who lives with diabetes, can find out how to get involved.
There are many great ways to show your support and raise awareness, so we’ve put together a list of 10 ideas to get you started. Whether you want to get involved locally or online, we have something for everyone.
November 14 is World Diabetes Day, and wearing blue is a great way to show your support for the cause.
Diabetes Day is a day when people across the globe come together to raise awareness about diabetes. You can wear blue to work, school, or out with friends.
Why blue? People wear blue to represent diabetes awareness because the International Diabetes Federation adopted the blue circle as the official global symbol of diabetes awareness.
There is currently no cure for diabetes, but research is always happening about finding ways to give people with diabetes a better quality of life. One way you can get involved this month is by fundraising for diabetes research.
You could host a bake sale or a car wash. You can also fundraise online for organizations like Mutual Aid Diabetes or Diversity in Diabetes.
Every little bit helps, and fundraising is also a great way to raise awareness about the condition.
Many organizations are working hard to find a cure for diabetes. Consider making a monetary donation or donating supplies like blood or insulin to help with research efforts and mutual aid.
One of the best things you can do this month is to educate others on the warning signs of diabetes.
This way, you can help others develop an awareness of the condition symptoms earlier on. People often don’t realize they have diabetes until symptoms become more severe. It can be easier to get a handle on condition management when people receive diabetes diagnoses earlier.
Brushing up on and sharing your diabetes knowledge could help save someone’s life.
In-person events may be happening in your community to help raise awareness on diabetes.
These events, like walks or educational seminars, are a great way to get involved and learn more about the condition. They can also be a great way to connect with others who understand what you are going through.
Check out the American Diabetes Association’s calendar to find an event near you.
Remember that it is always OK to participate at your comfort level. If joining in person is something you’re hesitant about, many events offer online or virtual options, like the Blue Balloon Challenge. This way, you can still participate and raise awareness but in a way that feels right for you.
Another way to get involved is by contacting your local representatives and asking them to support policies that will improve the lives of those with diabetes.
Earlier this year, many bills about emergency insulin access and insulin price reductions played out in the United States.
While some of those bills ultimately did not pass, patient advocates actively shared their stories and used their influence to underscore the importance of affordable lifesaving drugs for people with diabetes.
Although change doesn’t always come quickly, being educated and willing to advocate for the millions of people living with diabetes is one way to get involved.
If you’re looking for a more hands-on way to get involved, consider volunteering at a local hospital or clinic that treats people with diabetes. You can also volunteer to be a mentor for someone who just received a diabetes diagnosis.
If you are looking to help others, one great place to start is our Bezzy T2D community. We are a caring, judgment-free space for people with type 2 diabetes. You don’t have to feel alone with diabetes. Spending some time with people who understand you, and supporting others in their journeys, can help you feel connected.
Use social media to help spread diabetes awareness. You can share articles, start conversations, and post facts about the condition. Just be sure to use reputable sources so you’re sharing accurate information.
It’s important not to forget that your story, and your lived experience, are crucial. Sometimes, a diabetes diagnosis can come with feelings of shame. Sharing your diagnosis and what you’ve been going through can help others who are coping with their diagnoses feel less alone.
There are many misconceptions and a lot of false information out there about diabetes. Figuring out what is and isn’t true can be challenging.
Do some research and learn why certain ideas about diabetes are misleading or incorrect.
Share what you’ve learned and help dispel stigmas, myths, or misconceptions about the condition.
Educating people around you can help stop the stigma of diabetes. Someone who isn’t living with diabetes can always be an ally or a caregiver.
If you have diabetes, you may be eligible to participate in clinical trials. Researchers often look for participants to help test new treatments or medications.
Clinical trials are a great way to contribute directly to research efforts and can even be a way to access new treatments before they’re widely available.
Last but not least, one of the best things you can do is monitor your blood sugar levels regularly. You’ve probably heard sayings like: “you can’t pour from an empty cup” or “put your mask on before helping others.”
To advocate and participate in Diabetes Awareness Month, you need to make sure you are actively caring for your health. Managing your needs first allows you to have the energy to support and advocate for others.
Fact checked on November 14, 2022
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