Type 2 diabetes is three times more common in the black community and as this type of diabetes can be prevented or delayed with a healthy lifestyle we can make a huge difference in our community by raising awareness. With this in mind The Lake Foundation has teamed up with Diabetes UK with funding from Croydon Council to run a diabetes community champion project. The aim of this project is to empower the black community with the information that is needed to fully understand diabetes, its symptoms, risk factors and prevention so action can be taken.
We’ve recruited 17 community champions who have received in-depth training from Diabetes UK. The training has equipped them to get out in the community and effectively raise awareness and encourage behaviour change. They will get out and about targeting black churches, businesses and other organisations and we hope that this will make a significant difference in reducing the negative impact of diabetes on the black community in Croydon. We’ll be getting across the message that we can all reduce our risk of developing diabetes by eating a healthier diet, doing more exercise and maintaining a healthy weight.
On 14th June, our champions hosted their first awareness event at Croydon College where they raised awareness amongst staff and students giving out leaflets and encouraging people to take Diabetes UK’s useful ‘know your risk’ test. In addition to this they also helped out on 10th June at Diabetes UK and the Thinking Forward Initiative’s diabetes workshop in Crystal Palace.
Through both of these event our champions were able to reach our community, raise awareness and get people to think about lifestyle changes they can make to improve their health and reduce their risk of developing diabetes.
We’re so happy with the great work our champions have done so far and we’ll be back out in Croydon soon raising awareness. We’ll see you all on our travels!