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International Diabetes Federation


Diabetes awareness month begins

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In many parts of the world, the beginning of November marks the start of a month-long series of activities aimed at raising diabetes awareness and calling for urgent action to tackle the diabetes epidemic. Here's a reminder of why we all have to 'Act on Diabetes. Now.':

  • New figures recently launched by the International Diabetes Federation indicate that the number of people living with diabetes has risen to 366 million.
  • Diabetes is responsible for 4.6 million deaths a year - 1 every 7 seconds.
  • Healthcare spending on diabetes has reached USD 465 billion.
  • Diabetes is among the top 10 causes of disability, resulting in devastating complications such as blindness and lower limb amputations.
  • All nations – rich and poor – are suffering the impact of the diabetes epidemic
  • Diabetes is undermining global development.
  • Diabetes hits the poorest hardest

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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Go blue this November

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November has arrived and you know what that means: it's time to GO BLUE FOR DIABETES!

  • Organise a Flash Mob: Abu Dhabi, Colombo and Tel Aviv are the latest cities to join the World Diabetes Day Flash Mob Challenge. Visit our website to find out what it's all about and watch our tutorial video for tips on what you can perform to promote the diabetes cause in your area.
  • Shine a blue light for diabetes: Cyprus, Finland and Lebanon are the latest countries to confirm their participation in this year's Blue Monument Challenge. See the complete list of participating monuments and keep on sending your confirmations to If you have a building that's already going blue, take a picture and add it to our Flicker pool.
  • Take the Big Blue Test: help get life-saving supplies to people with diabetes in need by doing 14 to 20 minutes of exercise this November. Find out how at
  • Form a human blue circle: get together with your friends, family and colleagues and help promote the global symbol of the fight against diabetes. View some examples to get inspired.
  • Blue Fridays: don't forget to wear blue for the diabetes cause every Friday in November.

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Activity spotlight

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Here's another look at planned World Diabetes Day celebrations in all four corners of the world this November.

  • In Caracas, Venezuela, the diabetes association FENADIABETES will be organizing a Health Fair at the Parque Generalísimo Francisco de Miranda on 13 November. The event will feature different stands with educational talks, food tasting, screenings for diabetes, blood pressure and BMI, and physical activity demonstrations. On Monday the 14th, the Fountain in Plaza Venezuela will be lit in blue to mark World Diabetes Day.
  • In the Czech Republic, the local chapter of the International Federation of Medical Students' Associations (IFMSA), is organizing an event for World Diabetes Day in five cities in the country. The main aim is to promote screening of diabetes, raise awareness of the condition and work to prevent type 2 diabetes. In collaboration with health professionals, the medical students will measure blood glucose levels, blood pressure, BMI and the percentage of body fat and answer questions about diabetes. The main activity will take place in Prague's St. Wenceslas' Square, where  diabetes-related artwork will be exhibited.
  • In Japan, the Japanese Association for Diabetes Education and Care (JADEC) will be marking World Diabetes Day 2011 with a range of awareness activities throughout the country. These include a marathon, free diabetes consultations, and the screening of a diabetes video in various locations. The highlight will be the blue lighting of close to 100 famous landmarks on 14 November, many of which will be broadcast live through local and national media.
  • In Portland, Oregon, USA, 'Circle on the Court' will kick off the Pacific Northwest Diabetes Week (PNDW) on 13 November. This diabetes health and wellness event will offer free health screenings, free sports clinics for kids, and opportunities to meet sports celebrities who are committed to raising awareness about diabetes. PNDW is an annual event designed to unite local diabetes communities in a collaborative effort to bring diabetes to light for an entire week.
  • In Taiwan, the Chinese Taipei Diabetes Association (CTDA) kicked off their World Diabetes Day activities on 1 November with a press conference in the capital Taipei. Other events planned in the run-up to 14 November include a Garden Festival, a diabetes awareness walk, a Monument Lighting Ceremony and a Carnival Parade in the southern city of Taitung. The latter will feature health professionals, people with diabetes and the general public getting together to promote the diabetes education and prevention messages of the campaign.
  • In Trinidad and Tobago, the Bovell Cancer Diabetes Foundation (BCDF) will help people on the island better understand the serious threat that diabetes poses to individuals, families and communities by convening its third “Diabetes in the Limelight Jamboree”. This is an educational event that will include various diabetes educational and information booths, on-site glucose, cholesterol and blood pressure testing, vision testing, on-site doctors and dentists, nutrition education and a school children poster competition.

Keep on sending your event information and view a complete list of activities planned around the world.

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Follow the campaign

Visit for all campaign-related information and please continue to submit your short 2 to 10 second awareness videos on our participative video platform.

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