Diabetes South Africa is a non-profit organization, funded in 1969 to be a support and an advocate for all people with diabetes in South Africa.
Diabetes SA has a National Office in Johannesburg and 8 branches around the country.Branches are run primarily by volunteers drawn from the ranks of the membership base.
Promoting Diabetes care and support for all.
- Informing, encouraging and supporting all people who have diabetes and their families
- Acting as an advocate for people with diabetes, lobbying for better facilities, cheaper medication and better services
- Promoting public awareness of diabetes, its symptoms and risks.
One of Diabetes SA’s most important roles is to be a voice for all people with diabetes in South Africa, to lobby for improved services and the availability of essential medications. Decision makers in the national health care sector need to recognize that there is an epidemic of diabetes in this country and that action is required to provide care for those involved. Unlike AIDS, diabetes can be controlled and when educated and motivated, a person with diabetes can live a full, healthy and long life. Diabetes SA aims to assist this process at every level.
Lectures And Workshops
Each branch organizes regular lectures and workshops from experts on diabetes. At these workshops, the latest diabetes treatments and management techniques are discussed along with other important topics relating to diabetes.
As a lay organisation, Diabetes SA does not give medical advice and where necessary people who seek help are referred to the relevant service providers. However, Diabetes SA’s knowledgeable workers, most of whom have diabetes themselves or in their families, are well placed to assist with general management concerns and to give encouragement and support – a service that health-care workers are often too busy to provide.
One of the great strengths of Diabetes SA is its network of support groups. These groups aim to give people with diabetes the opportunity to share their experiences and benefit from interaction with other people in the same situation as themselves. They are typically run from someone’s home or in a clinic and they offer personal encouragement and an intimate concern that medical professionals have no time to give. People with diabetes need to be aware of and manage their condition every day, every month and every year for the rest of their lives. Each support group (or care group) is unique; it’s nature depending on the people involved. Most have strong ties to and are guided by a local branch of Diabetes SA.
Getting out of your home environment and away from your normal support system, living together and learning from each other has proven to be a most successful diabetes management tool around the world – and is particularly important for children with diabetes. Diabetes SA runs camps nationwide.
Publications & Newsletters
- Diabetes SA publishes and distributes the following publications:
- Diabetes Focus – A quarterly magazine that features up to date news on developments in diabetes care and research, features on how others cope with their diabetes, practical tips on daily care as well as recipes and Q&A pages.
- Diabetes and You – An easy to use beginner’s guide to diabetes which is available in English, Afrikaans, SeSotho, isiZulu, iXhosa and French.
- Link Up – A newsletter to parents of children with diabetes.
- A range of pamphlets, booklets and posters.
- A library of books and videos, which can be borrowed from National Office and most branches.
- Diabetes SA’s easy to navigate, regularly updated website.