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International Diabetes Federation

A campaign led by the International Diabetes Federation

November is Diabetes Awareness Month

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In many parts of the world November marks the start of a month-long series of activities to put diabetes firmly in the public spotlight. On 14 November, the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) will be releasing the 6th Edition of its Diabetes Atlas, the authoritative source of evidence on the global burden of diabetes. New estimates will be provided for 2013 and 2035 with the goal of strengthening the evidence base for coordinated efforts to stem the diabetes epidemic.

Here is  a reminder of why urgent action is required to protect our future:

  • Diabetes is among the top 10 causes of disability, resulting in life-threatening complications such as heart disease, stroke, lower limb amputations and blindness
  • 1 in 2 people with diabetes are undiagnosed
  • 80% of people with diabetes live in low- and middle-income countries.

View all our campaign messages to help inform your awareness activities in the days and weeks to come. Together we can make a difference!

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Support our World Diabetes Day Thunderclap!

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Help our World Diabetes Day message be heard by joining our World Diabetes Day Thunderclap initiative and showing your support for the millions of people with diabetes who do not have access to the care they need to manage their condition effectively.

Thunderclap is a website that allows people to pledge to Tweet or Facebook a message all on the same day and at the exact same time, in order to achieve the maximum effect. We need to reach at least 250 supporters at the latest on November 14, but the more supporters we get the more successful the campaign will be.

The message that will be shared is: “I support World #Diabetes Day because millions don’t have access to the care they need #WDD

On November 14 at 4.14 pm CET we will all speak with one voice!

Join our Thunderclap.

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Global Activity Roundup

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Our online global events map is filling up daily with planned World Diabetes Day activities from around the world. Here are some highlights from the latest information that we've received:

  • In Adelaide, Australia, Diabetes Counselling Online will host an open house day to raise awareness of the impact of diabetes across the community. With 280 people per day diagnosed with diabetes in Australia, it is everybody's business. They will take over the Channel 9 Telethon Distinctive Home and Land Lottery house for the day and provide people with diabetes with the chance to meet with counsellors and mingle over morning tea. At the end of the day the house will go blue for diabetes awareness.
  • In Bahrain, the Bahrain Diabetes Society has started a series of awareness activities that will end in December. These include a diabetes exhibition and walk in the cities of Durrat Al Bahrain and Dohat Arad, a 3-day paddle challenge around the country, diabetes screening and counselling at school, clubs, universities and other organisations, and a Diabetes Mobile Unit to raise awareness about diabetes education and prevention among local children.
  • In Brussels, Luxembourg and Strasbourg, the European Region of the International Diabetes Federation (IDF Europe) is organising a two-week campaign at the three sites of the European Parliament, focusing on healthy lifestyle and nutrition. The restaurants of the Parliament will offer special healthy lunches with little blue circle flags and placemats displaying lifestyle and nutritional recommendations, and the Sports Centre will provide classes promoting exercise and physical activity. The highlight event of the campaign will be a breakfast meeting with policymakers and other EU stakeholders on 13 November to discuss the findings of the IDF Europe study on Access to Diabetes Care in Europe. 
  • In Ilopango, El Salvador, a month-long series of activities is being organised by the city's medical unit to mark World Diabetes Day. These include a diabetes education day, an awareness walk, training for nurses and health professionals, and a special Blue Friday with screening for risk factors of type 2 diabetes among the general public.
  • In Lebanon, the Lebanese Diabetes Association will be organising ten awareness activities in ten cities under the patronage of the Ministry of Health. One of the highlights will be a 10km walk on 9 November. Blue balloons will be released at the start and participants will receive a blue t-shirt in support of World Diabetes Day. Information about diabetes and its complications and free blood glucose and Hba1C checks will all also be provided.
  • In Madrid, Spain, the Sociedad Española de Diabetes (Spanish Diabetes Society) has arranged a special benefit football match in collaboration with the Real Madrid Foundation on 14 November. A team of past players and legends of Real Madrid will face a selection of all-stars to show their support for the fight against diabetes and promote the benefits healthy living and physical activity in preventing type 2 diabetes.
  • In the USA, the Miami-based blog "Jaime mi Dulce Guerrero" has launched an online campaign based on the World Diabetes Day campaign slogan "Diabetes: protect our future." Followers of the blog and the wider Spanish-speaking diabetes community are invited to customise and share a template image with the phrase "I protect the future of...", inserting the name of a person with diabetes that they care about and promoting the importance of education and empowerment.

Please continue to submit your event information online.

Still unsure how to mark the day? Here are some ideas on how you can go blue this November.

Some simple things you can do to show your support include:

  • Posting the blue circle picbadge on your Facebook and/or Twitter profiles or replace your profile picture with the blue circle on all your social media channels.
  • Adding a reference to World Diabetes Day in your email signature with a link to

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Keep on Taking a Step for Diabetes

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We are delighted to announce that our Take a Step for Diabetes campaign target of 371 million steps has been reached, less than 30 days before the deadline of the World Diabetes Congress in Melbourne, 2-6 December. Over 570 individuals and associations have contributed to achieving this target through their daily efforts to raise awareness of diabetes in their community, improve the lives of people with diabetes and promote the benefits of a healthy lifestyle in preventing and managing the condition.

The Take a Step for Diabetes campaign does not end here and our online platform will continue to be open to receive your steps until the start of the World Diabetes Congress in December. Please continue to show us how you are taking a step for diabetes at

All registered users on our online platform will be included as signatories to an open letter that the International Diabetes Federation will send to United Nations Secretary-General Ban ki-Moon, reaffirming the importance of maintaining the global commitments on diabetes made during the 2011 United Nations High Level Meeting on NCDs high on the global health agenda.

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