Diabetes UK Measure Up Ethnic Communities

Diabetes UK Measure Up Ethnic Communities

The Diabetes UK Black and Minority Ethnic Groups (BME) Roadshow which is supported by Western Union Money Transfers, will be visiting five locations in London to provide culturally specific advice and information on diabetes to diverse communities.

The first BME Roadshow took place on Sunday 10th September at the Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, Neasden to target the Hindu community. Western Union Money Transfer already has presence at the Saya Shop, the catering arm of Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, which was established when they joined hands recently.

Furthermore Western Union will be donating £1 to the registered charity BAPS (Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottamni Swaminarayan Sanstha, UK) for every transaction made to anywhere in the world, sent from its premises. These donations will contribute to the 160 humanitarian projects that the Mandir is involved with, both locally and internationally, with the focus remaining on social, moral, educational, ecological, health, cultural and spiritual care. The funds, through these projects, will help to promote a society, free from violence, drugs and crime and will infuse the spirit of selfless service.

Henk Elzenga, Managing Director FEXCO MT, Western Union’s UK representative said of the relationship, “Western Union are proud to be continued supporters of Diabetes UK and its dedication to raising the awareness of diabetes among the ethnic communities. For over 3 years now, Western Union has worked closely with Diabetes UK. Our association forms part of a key programme of commitment to the South Asian and African Caribbean community in the UK.”

The BME Roadshow will also be visiting East London Mosque, Whitechapel on Thursday 14 September for the Muslim community, Brixton Market on 16 September for the Black and African-Caribbean community, Ridley Street Market, Hackney on 22 September for all ethnic communities, and Sri Guru Singh Sabha Gurdwara, Southall on 8 October for the Sikh community.

Jenne Dixit, Equality and Diversity Officer at Diabetes UK, said: “Diabetes prevalence in the South Asian community is six times higher than in the general population and five times greater in people of Black or African Caribbean origin. It is essential we raise awareness within these communities about their increased risk to empower people to reduce their chances of developing diabetic complications such as heart disease, kidney failure and blindness.”

The BME Roadshow focuses on people’s waist measurement. It asks people to take a tape measure to their waists and measure around their middles, half way between their hip bone and lowest rib, to determine their risk. Trouser size is often not an accurate measurement of waist size. If you are of South Asian, Black or African Caribbean origin, and are over 25, have diabetes in the family and/or a waist measurement of 31.5 inches or more for females, 35 inches or more for South Asian males or 37 inches for Black males, you should ask your GP for a test for diabetes.

Diabetes UK has also updated its ‘Living Healthily with Type 2 Diabetes’ guide aimed specifically at people with Type 2 diabetes from the Black and African Caribbean communities. This guide has kindly been supported by Western Union Money Transfer. The aim of the booklet is to raise awareness within the Black and African Caribbean community that a healthy balanced diet is key to good diabetes management. Empowering people to make important lifestyle changes will help them to reduce their risk of developing diabetic complications. The booklet covers topics such as:

What diabetes is, why it develops and how to manage the condition Cultural beliefs, lifestyle and religion Myths and misconceptions about diabetes Medication and complementary and herbal therapies.

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