Through my project “Us and others: Combating discrimination and stigma associated with diabetes,” I engaged in academic research, authored a book and organised workshops. I examined the prevalence of diabetes-related stigma in Serbia through research, interviews, and surveys. My focus was on defining what constitutes stigma, identifying the various spheres where it occurs, understanding its development and impact on us, as well as providing strategies for recognising and confronting it. The significance of this work lies in its ability to raise awareness about the importance of addressing stigma.
My project reached thousands of people in Serbia and neighbouring countries such as Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia and Montenegro. The book, published by the Diabetes Association of Serbia, is available free of charge, further ensuring its accessibility to a wide audience. News reports, podcasts, medical websites, influencers, and newspapers highlighted its findings and contributions.
Most important is how this initiative empowered people living with diabetes by giving them new reasons to combat societal stigmatisation surrounding their condition while simultaneously educating those around them.