New Ealing Diabetes Community Champions

Raising awareness of Type 2 diabetes in minority communities

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A diabetes charity has successfully trained fifteen volunteers from Black Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds in Ealing as part of an innovative project.

Diabetes UK supported by Ealing Clinical Commissioning Group has trained local people from the community including an Archbishop, a Walks leader and a trainee Nurse among others in Ealing as part of the charity’s award winning Community Champion project.

The Diabetes Community Champions have learnt about the risk factors, signs and symptoms, understanding diabetes and myths and misconceptions that are prevalent in some cultures.

They are now looking for opportunities locally to raise awareness by holding events, giving talks and encouraging people at high risk of developing Type 2 diabetes to visit their local GP or community pharmacist for a diabetes test.

South Asian people are up to six times more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes than people of a White European background, and South Asians with diabetes are three times more likely to have heart disease. People of African Caribbean and African descent are up to three times more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes.

South Asian people are more at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes over the age of 25, rather than over 40 in the rest of the population. South Asian men are also at increased risk when their waist measures more than 35 inches, as opposed to more than 37 inches in other men.

Juliet O’Brien, Diabetes UK Diverse Communities Officer, said: “We are delighted that the Community Champions Project has seen such success in Ealing. The next stage of the project is for the newly appointed champions to go into their local community and raise awareness of the condition.

“Raising awareness of Type 2 diabetes in minority communities is absolutely vital; people from a South Asian background are six times more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes, and people from an African or African Caribbean community are three times more likely to develop the condition. Getting the word out into the local community about the risk factors of diabetes is a crucial step to tackling the rising tide of diabetes.”

Neha Unadkat, ICP Project Manager at Ealing CCG, said: “The Diabetes Community Champion project is a great initiative which has allowed to empower local people and give them the tools they need to go into their community and talk confidentially about diabetes. Ealing is a diverse borough, and we are really looking forward to seeing the newly trained Community Champions going out into their own communities to raise awareness of diabetes.”

To find out more about the next stages of the Community Champion Project in Ealing then email Juliet.o’  or visit


August 22, 2013