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A Camden Christmas: Local diabetes group talks festivities and food

December 2016

With many tempting treats on sale in supermarkets, the festive season can be a tricky time of the year to maintain a balanced diet and manage diabetes.  Before opening any advent calendar windows, the Diabetes UK Camden Group got together on Monday 28 November to discuss managing diabetes during the festive season.

Ably assisted by specialist nurses Kathrin and Asha, the group learnt about the impact of different food choices and shared their experiences and tips – from enjoying a breakfast that offers slow release of energy through the day to tasty alternative food choices and healthy drink swaps.  A few simple strategies at the supermarket and in the kitchen can lead to highly enjoyable mealtimes over the Christmas period.

The group welcomed two new members who really enjoyed the sharing of ideas and information.  

Paula:  “By coming to the group today I’ve discovered that, while we each have our individual tastes, it can be really helpful to talk and share ideas with the other group members about how to look after your diet over Christmas.”

Find out more about Christmas food and diabetes.

“I have learnt a lot from each member of the group, and I have learnt things about myself too.  We learn from each other; that’s the most important thing.”


Diabetes UK Local Group meetings offer a chance to meet other people living with diabetes, share experiences and learn more about diabetes management.  The Camden Group is keen to welcome new members in 2017.   

Meetings are held on the fourth Monday of each month from 3 - 4.30pm at the Mary Rankin Centre, St Pancras Hospital, 4 St Pancras Way, NW1 0PE.   The next monthly meeting is on Monday 23 January, when the theme will be “understanding the language of diabetes and clinic letters”.  Whatever your level of knowledge, there will be lots to learn with specialist nurse Mani and an opportunity to share experiences in a friendly and supportive environment.  Attendance is free and tea and coffee are provided. 

For more information please telephone Diabetes UK on 020 7424 1116, or you can email 

Find out more about volunteering in London 

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Croydon pledges to improve diabetes education as latest figures show more than 10 per cent of residents have the condition

November 2016

Diabetes UK has welcomed a commitment from Croydon health chiefs to improve the number of people diagnosed with diabetes attending education courses – crucial to helping them self-manage their condition. Croydon Clinical Commissioning Group is the first in the country to make this bold pledge. 

The commitment comes as recently revealed figures from Public Health England show that 31,579 of people in Croydon have diabetes, 10.5% of the population and ahead of the national average of around 9%.*

People with diabetes typically see a health care professional for just a few hours a year and self-manage their condition the rest of the time. Successful self-management can reduce the risk of the complex and costly complications of diabetes including lower limb amputation, heart attack, stroke, kidney problems and blindness.

The CCG is undertaking to ensure that at least half of people newly diagnosed with diabetes each year, and half of the total population living with diabetes attend an education course to help them manage their diabetes. 

The education courses offered in Croydon are called DESMOND (Diabetes Education and Self-Management for Ongoing and Newly Diagnosed) for Type 2 diabetes and DAFNE (Dose Adjustment for Normal Eating) for Type 1 diabetes.  The courses help people to understand their diabetes, make better food choices and feel more confident and in control.

Front row, left to right: David Dullaghan, Commissioning Programme Lead, Croydon CCG, Dipti Gandhi, Clinical Lead Croydon Diabetes Service, Croydon CCG and Rachael Glover from Diabetes UK
Back row: Members of the Diabetes Steering Group for the CCG including people from the CCG, Croydon University Hospital and Primary care. 

Rachael Glover, Influencing Manager, Diabetes UK, welcomed the decision by Croydon CCG to focus on diabetes education. She said: “Diabetes education courses make living with diabetes easier. When you are newly diagnosed, it can feel like there is a lot to learn but attending a course can really help you understand what diabetes is and how it affects your body.

“We have found that people who have been on a course feel more confident about looking after their condition and are less likely to suffer complications. Diabetes education can be life-changing and it is essential that people with diabetes have access to it. This is a bold and ambitious pledge, we look forward to working with Croydon CCG.”

David Dullighan, the commissioning programme lead for NHS Croydon CCG said: “Prevention and treatment of diabetes is one of our key priorities, given the high prevalence of diabetes among our local population. We recognise the importance of diabetes education programmes to give people with diabetes the confidence and skills to take control of their condition. We are committed to improving diabetes education”

*The new Diabetes Prevalence Model, produced by Public Health England, estimates the number of cases of Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes over 20 years to 2035 based on health survey data. The model suggest that around one in four people who have diabetes don’t yet know. 90 per cent of cases of diabetes are Type 2.

Find out more about diabetes education

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Hair-raising spectacle raises funds for Diabetes UK

October 2016

One of the students at the show

Hair and beauty students in Sutton transported an admiring audience to the Year 3000 with a show which raised funds for Diabetes UK.

The show, which took place at John Ruskin College in Selsdon raised £300 for Diabetes UK. It was staged as a competition with local employers as judges with industry-related top end prizes

Teacher Shelly Angeau-Wilson, 34, who lives in Sutton, put on the event  said:  My six-year-old daughter has Type 1 diabetes – she was diagnosed at two years old. I want to raise awareness and support other families by letting people know how life-changing it is to have a diabetes diagnosis.

Claire Lubbock, Diabetes UK Fundraising Manager, said: “Shelly and the students put on a wonderful show and we are very grateful to her and very impressed by what the students achieved.” 

Shelly, who put on the event, with the students

The London Clinic raise over £1,500 in sponsored walk

September 2016

The London Clinic raised cash to fund research and care for people with diabetes for Diabetes UK.Twelve fundraisers took part in a sponsored walk across the picturesque Chilterns. Medical Director Simon St. Clair Carter and Consultant Nurse Phillip Yeoh from The London Clinic set up the challenge as part of a fundraising campaign in the hospital, which included awareness-raising stalls and cake sales.

Fundraisers Phillip Yeoh, Lilian Marza, Felicity George, Carine Dewaele, Helena Broadway, Camilla Dowker, Karl Hodgson, Claire Lubbock from Diabetes UK, and Mr Simon St Clair Carter (not on picture Bartlomiej Kubieniec, Tamara Brun & Steve Jones)

The eight-mile walk was for a great cause as Simon explains: “Many of us have family and friends who have to manage the symptoms of diabetes every day. The London Clinic is committed to improving the lives of people living with the condition, which can be very debilitating.”

Phillip was delighted with the walk and money raised: “We are over the moon to have exceeded our target of £1,000 by raising £1,519, which will be a great contribution to the research and management of diabetes.”  

The London Clinic’s diabetes consultants and nurses support patients with up-to-date clinical care, emotional support, on-going education and supportive contact at the hospital on Harley Street. 

Claire Lubbock, Diabetes UK Fundraising Manager, said: “We are very grateful to The London Clinic for raising funds for Diabetes UK. Every penny raised will help us to support the millions of people living with diabetes in the UK.” 

Find out more  about signing up to future fundraising events for Diabetes UK or call the Events Fundraising team on 0345 123 2399.

Fitness Fundraising for Diabetes UK on 10 September


August 2016

Diabetes UK supporter Sev from Enfield is organising a fundraising fitness event and fun day on Saturday, 10 September. On the day there will be lots of great fitness activities to choose from including a session by Fitness with Sev for the brave, yoga and Zumba. 

To recover there will be a barbecue and activities to keep the children amused including face painting and a bouncy castle.

Sev says “I am doing this fitness charity event in aid of Diabetes UK as I lost a very close friend last year. Diabetes affects thousands of lives each year. We will have a speaker from the charity itself and a host of fun, games, food and variety of fitness professionals and an opportunity to win some fantastic prizes.”

The day will take place at West Lea School, Hasllebury Road, N9 9TU between 11am and 3pm. Entrance is £5 per person with under 16’s going for free.

Sev would like to raise £3,000 in memory of her old friend, Androulla, who lived with Type 2 diabetes for 20 years. The two had been friends for 40 years before she passed away in 2015, after developing complications with her diabetes.

For more information, please contact Sev at fitnesswithsev@gmail. To donate, please visit Sev's JustGiving page.

Diabetes UK supporter Sev from Enfield 

Shaun runs a marathon on the spot at Waterloo Station for Diabetes UK

June 2016 

A construction manager raised more than £2,500 doing an on-the-spot marathon at Waterloo Station to raise funds for Diabetes UK.

The marathon effort saw Shaun Stewardson complete the distance using a cross trainer.

Shaun has had Type 1 diabetes since he was a child. 

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He planned to run the London Marathon in 2015 but unfortunately developed an injury. He then decided that although he couldn’t run on the road, he could run a marathon using a cross trainer.

Shaun raised a total of £2,718 and was given a lot of encouragement by commuters.

Claire Lubbock, Diabetes UK Regional Fundraiser, said: “It’s wonderful that Shaun has raised funds for us. Every penny he raised will help us to support the millions of people living with diabetes in the UK. We would like to thank London Speaker for their support on the day as well.” 

Find out more about Type 1 diabetes.

Shaun decided if he couldn't run on the road, he'd run on the spot.

Allegis Group hosts rugby tournament for Diabetes UK

June 2016

Allegis Group, a global staffing company with a London office near Moorgate, organised a rugby tournament for Diabetes UK to raise funds to combat the condition.

The tournament, which took place in March, saw £1,500 raised and this was increased to £2,000 by a donation from the Group. 

Tom Knights, a Team Leader in the Allegis London office, said: “With more than 170 attendees it was a brilliant example of collaboration across different brands and teams and it was great to see everyone coming together and raising money for charity. TEKsystems took on Aston Carter and Aerotek Life Sciences.

Tom added: "As soon as the game kicked off, the ‘One Allegis’ sentiment was temporarily forgotten and it was clear that both teams were desperate to win. It was a game of two halves, but when all was said and done the best team won the first half and the other team won the second!

"Even though it ended 14-8 to TEK systems, it was a great way to kick-off our corporate social responsibility programme for 2016.”

TEKsystems took on Aston Carter and Aerotek Life Sciences to raise money for Diabetes UK

Claire Lubbock, Regional Fundraiser for Diabetes UK, said: “We are very grateful to the Allegis Group for selecting Diabetes UK as one of their charities of the year and for raising funds for the charity. Every penny raised will help us to support the millions of people living with diabetes in the UK.”

To find out more information about signing up to future fundraising events for Diabetes UK, go to our Fundraising events page or call the Events Fundraising team on 0345 123 2399. 


School in Southfields is the first London holder of a “Good Diabetes Care in Schools” award

February 2016


Roz Rosenblatt (left) presents the special award to headteacher Ms Roberts and children from Riversdale Primary School

A school in Southfields has received a special award that celebrates schools which provide great care and support to children and young people with Type 1 diabetes. 

Riversdale Primary School, Merton Road, Southfields, is one of the first schools in the country - and the only one in London - to win a Diabetes UK “Good Diabetes Care in School” Awards. 

The school was chosen by an assessment panel which included parents and representatives from Diabetes UK. It has been recognised for the support it provides in delivering effective diabetes care and management. Riversdale Primary School has been presented with the special award which is valid for two years.

It is very important that children and young people with diabetes receive good care in school to help them keep their blood glucose to target levels.

In the short-term, high or low blood glucose levels can make a child extremely unwell and, in the long-term, high blood glucose levels can increase risk of serious complications such as amputation, blindness and stroke later in life. Supporting children to manage their diabetes well is also key to enabling them to get the best from their education and school activities.

Ms Amy Roberts, the headteacher at Riverside, said: “We are delighted to win the Diabetes UK’s Good Diabetes Care in School Award. We take our responsibility to provide children with Type 1 diabetes with the support and care they need to manage their condition safely in school very seriously. 

“We have worked closely with students, parents and school staff to ensure that the right care is in place - and that children and young people with Type 1 diabetes have the same opportunities as their peers and are able to fully participate in their education and reach their full academic potential.”

Roz Rosenblatt, London Manager for Diabetes UK, said: “Congratulations to Riversdale which is providing outstanding care and support to children and young people with Type 1 diabetes. We want all schools in London to follow Riversdale’s example.”

The award will run until summer next year so it’s not too late for other parents, healthcare professionals and school staff to nominate schools who are providing outstanding care. We want all children and young with Type 1 diabetes to get the care and support they need to lead full and active lives.”

Visit Good Diabetes Care in School Award for more information.

Volunteers have a workshop discussion


London Volunteer Networking Day

18 November 2015

This month, 27 volunteers from across London attended this year’s Networking Day - Sharing perspectives; global & local approaches to engaging diverse communities. The aim was to learn from each other about different ways to work with diverse communities.

The day started with an update from London’s Regional Manager, Roz Rosenblatt, about

the global and local impacts of diabetes.

Professor Peter Whincup from St George’s University of London presented his research into Type 2 diabetes and ethnicity. Krishna Sarda, head of the Engaging Communities team, gave us an update on their work with Community Champions and what else will be happening next year.

Volunteers split off into “workshops” that made use of “open space technology” – a system of having open conversations. These workshops were volunteer-led and allowed the conversation to flow with minimal guidance. Volunteers were encouraged to participate and move freely between workshops at any time. Workshop discussions included: What are challenges of working with BAME communities? How can we make our groups a more welcoming environment? What are your success stories of working with diverse communities? And if there is one thing that you would like to share from your community, what would it be?

If you were not able to attend the Networking Day or you would like a reminder of what was discussed, we have compiled the notes (Word, 129KB) from several kind attendees.

We look forward to seeing you at next year’s Networking Day and hope those who attended found the day to be a worthwhile and enjoyable experience.  You can see the upcoming London Region December Newsletter for more in-depth information.

Bah Humbug, who wants to think about Christmas already?! Christmas may seem a long way off, but here at Diabetes UK we are keen to make sure you have the chance to get some festive fundraising going.

There are loads of festive events you can take part in to support Diabetes UK, but right now places for Santa Dashes in the capital are selling like hot cakes.

Santa Dashes are 5 or 10km fun runs where each participants gets their very own Santa costume and the chance to raise some funds for their favourite charity at Christmas.

There are lots of events to choose from including:

  • Bromley Santa Dash on 29th November
  • Bexhill Santa Dash on 5th December
  • Victoria Park Santa Dash on 6 December
  • City Hall Santa Dash on 6 December. 

If running dressed at St Nick isn’t for you, why not think about holding another fundraiser in the office to raise those all-important funds for Diabetes UK? There are lots of options to choose from, Christmas jumper day, Christmas cake sale, a fundraising secret Santa or even an office Christmas party and raffle.

Regardless of what you are up to, we would like to hear what fundraising you have planned for Diabetes UK. Get in touch and we would be happy to support you!


Best friends take steps to raise funds for Diabetes UK

October 2015

Gemma, left, and Cheryl

Two friends from Sutton took part in a walking challenge of 26 miles - taking on London’s weekend shoppers on the way - to raise vital funds for Diabetes UK.

Gemma Herrington, 35, who works as a part-time sales data administrator, and Cheryl Sharpless, 36, who looks after her husband and son who both have extra needs, undertook the London Trekathon. This is a walk along the route of the London Marathon but without the benefit of the roads being closed.

The friends hope to raise £1,000. Gemma said: “I brought up my brother in-law from the age of nine and saw him go through the challenging teenage years trying to defy the odds of this demanding illness. Both Cheryl and I have other family and friends with Type 1 and 2 diabetes and we know the struggles they often deal with on a daily basis.”

Claire Lubbock, Fundraiser for Diabetes UK London, said: “We are really grateful to Gemma and Cheryl for their fundraising efforts.”


Talk to your rabbi and health professional before feasts and fasting, Jews with diabetes urged

September 2015

Diabetes UK is recommending that Jewish people with diabetes talk with their rabbi ahead of the three major festivals in the coming weeks.Rosh Hashanah, on September 14-15, and Simchat Torah at the end of Sukkot, on October 6, are both traditionally celebrated by feasting. Both celebrations can be daunting for people with diabetes who want to take part in the festivals but need to manage their condition. But Diabetes UK wants to make it clear that having diabetes doesn’t need to stop people from eating traditional festive foods, and that even sweet foods, honey and alcohol can be enjoyed, just that this needs to be in moderation.

Yom Kippur, which falls on September 23, can also be particularly challenging because it involves a 25-hour fast. Prolonged periods of fasting could cause blood glucose levels to drop too low or rise too high which can be very dangerous for people with diabetes, as can the increased risk of becoming dehydrated. Jewish law states that a person should not put their health at risk in order to fast. However, Diabetes UK urges anyone with diabetes who is keen to fast to discuss this with their healthcare professional and rabbi ahead of the festival so they have time to plan how they can fast safely.

Libby Dowling, Diabetes UK clinical advisor, said: “We want everyone with diabetes to enjoy the upcoming festivals, and that shouldn’t involve denying yourself traditional festive foods. We even have lots of apple recipes on Diabetes UK’s Enjoy Food website which are perfect for this sort of festival.

 "The key is to plan and be aware of how a treat may affect your blood glucose levels. Enjoy small amounts of ordinary festive foods and balance this with healthier recipes and snacks.

 “If you test your blood glucose levels, make sure that you have your testing kit with you and also some hypo treatments in case you need them, such as kosher Jelly Babies or dextrose tablets.

 "The other important thing to remember is to stay active, as this will help you to manage blood glucose levels.

 “One or two high blood glucose readings should not affect long-term diabetes control, but people should aim to avoid persistently high readings. Speak with a healthcare professional to find out what is right for you.

 “They can also advise you on fasting, and on how to ensure you eat properly either side of the fast if you do decide to do it.

 “Also speak with your rabbi so they are aware of your situation.”

 For more information speak to your healthcare professional or call the Diabetes UK Careline on 0345 123 2399, please go to our Enjoy Food page and fasting  page.  


Ben's half marathon success

16 July 2015

Ben with Claire from Diabetes UK and his big cheque.

en Reeves from London took on the Southampton Half Marathon for Diabetes UK and raised over £1,000.

An experienced fundraiser, Ben was keen to make sure that he raised as much as possible, setting up a justgiving page early on and enquiring about matched giving with his employer

Luckily, they had a fantastic scheme in place and very generously donated £500 towards Ben’s fundraising. On the day, Ben completed his 13.1 miles in just 1 hour 27 minutes placing him in the top finishers - and his final total was £1,019.

Diabetes UK would like to thank Ben for all of his hard work – we think you and all of our supporters are amazing.

For more information on how you can support Diabetes UK by taking part in an event please contact us at


Barnet charity worker to cycle 800 kilometres to raise funds for Diabetes UK

1 July 2015

David has completed his first challenge.

A Barnet man has taken on a five-race challenge to raise vital funds for Diabetes UK – where he works.

David Jones, Head of Involvement and Shared Practice at Diabetes UK and also on the committee of the Diabetes UK Barnet Group, decided to take on five cycling events this summer. They are:

  1. The Hell of the North - 100km of rough tracks, fields and other stuff not suitable for a road bike which he has completed.
  2. The Tour of Cambridgeshire - 128km of flat, fast riding.
  3. Ride London 100 - 100 miles on the Olympic road race course, lots of people and big hills.
  4. An ascent of Col De La Madone - the mountain the pros use to test their climbing before La Tour. 10km of steep, windy roads up to over 1,000 m.
  5. London to Paris - 234 miles over three days.

David, 43, who lives in High Barnet, is taking part in the cycling challenges to support Diabetes UK’s essential campaigning work and support for people living with the condition, including the Barnet support group.

He has been training hard for the event and said: “When you include training it will amount to thousands of miles and metres climbed. It means lots of early mornings in all weathers but it is worth it to know I am contributing to this important area. My dad has diabetes and I’ve seen him experience the good and bad of diabetes care. I have also got to meet lots of people living with diabetes through my work and volunteering and can see how much more could be done to support them.”

Diabetes UK Fundraising Officer Claire Lubbock said: “We’re really grateful to David for helping us to raise vital funds to help people living with diabetes. As well as raising money he is setting a great example and showing that he really believes in his work and that of the organisation as a whole.

“The money raised will go a long way towards helping us support the 3.9 million people around the UK who are living with the condition, campaign to improve the quality of care available to them and work to stem the rising tide of diabetes. Our much-needed work wouldn’t be possible without the help of our incredible fundraisers like David.”

Sponsor David through his Just Giving page. 

To find out more information about signing up to future fundraising events for Diabetes UK, visit our fundraising page  or call the Events Fundraising team on 0345 123 2399. 


Artist with Type 1 raises thousands for Diabetes UK 

May 2015

Omar and an image from his exhibition with Contini Art UK

Contini Art UK and artist Omar Hassan have raised an amazing £5,500 for Diabetes UK with an exclusive Art sale!

Omar, 28, who was born in Milan, Italy, was a talented boxer as a youngster. Omar’s Type 1 diabetes held him back from this dream, something he has since explored through his latest art collection – Breaking Through.

Omar’s work provides a positive insight into the life of someone with diabetes, and shows that the condition is not a barrier to success.

Working with the glamorous gallery on New Bond Street, Omar launched his first exhibition with Contini Art UK and donated the sale of a unique piece, created on the evening of the private view to Diabetes UK. This fantastic piece raised £5,500 for the charity and we are delighted to have the support of both Omar and Contini Art UK.

This impressive donation is almost enough to fund a whole care weekend, which will help up to 30 children with Type 1 and their families to learn how to manage the condition and feel more confident with their diabetes.

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