Derry and Strabane District Council’s newly appointed Mayor Lilian Seenoi Barr held a reception in the Guildhall on Monday, 10th June 2024 to launch the recently formed Western Diabetes Group. This event coincides with National Diabetes Awareness Week, during which a series of roadshows are taking place in local community venues throughout the WHSCT to raise awareness about the risks associated with diabetes.  The DCSDC Council Offices and the Alley Theatre in Strabane will also be illuminated in blue to draw attention to the issue of diabetes within our population.

National Diabetes Awareness Week presents an ideal opportunity to officially launch the Western Diabetes Group which is working to provide people living with, or at risk of diabetes, with the information and support to manage their diabetes well or, in some cases, reduce their risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Coordinated by Developing Healthy Communities as part of the Derry and Strabane Healthy Cities initiative, the group's members are drawn from a range of agencies including the Western Health and Social Care Trust (WHSCT), GP Federation, Ulster University, DCSDC, the NI Public Health Agency. Diabetes UK, JDRF (Type 1 Diabetes), the Healthy Living Centre Alliance, to name but a few. Several local councillors from the DCSDC Health Committee also attended the event. 

The group has been established in response to the concerning levels of diabetes within the WHSCT area.  According to a spokesperson for the Western Diabetes group, nearly 18,000 people in the Western Trust area are living with type 2 diabetes. Additionally, there are approximately 11,500 other individuals who are also affected that are registered prediabetic. Many people are unaware of the signs, symptoms, and risks of diabetes, and accessing specialised healthcare support can be challenging due to pressures on primary and secondary health services. However, there are opportunities to collaborate with local community organisations to support diabetes prevention and management. Involving patients and carers in educating healthcare providers and others about living well with diabetes is also crucial.

The Western Diabetes Group will work with individuals living with all forms of diabetes, aiming to reduce the incidence and impact of the condition through engagement with local agencies and communities, awareness raising and delivery of prevention and wellbeing programmes and support.

Mayor Seenoi Barr commented, ‘I am delighted to launch the Western Diabetes Group and commend the various agencies for coming together to tackle this very serious and complex condition.   I have no doubt that the collective expertise, knowledge and skills of the Western Diabetes Group will make a positive difference to halting the rise of diabetes within our population’. 

For Further Information:

To learn more about the Diabetes Services operating within the Western Health and Social Care Trust, visit www.westerntrust.hscni.net.   For more information and support regarding diabetes, visit www.diabetes.org.uk. The Diabetes UK helpline is also available Monday to Friday, 9am to 6pm on 0345 123 2399

Diabetes Roadshow

This year, Diabetes Week is all about shining a light on the essential health checks that help people with diabetes live life to the fullest. From foot care to eye tests, staying on top of these checks is crucial for a healthy life. Let’s spread the word and support each other in our community to be well-informed and proactive!

To further this cause, there are roadshows packed with valuable information and resources to support the health and wellbeing of the local communities. Come along, bring your questions, and learn more about managing diabetes effectively.

Roadshow Dates and Locations:

📅 Monday 10 June, 2pm - 4pm
📍 Old Library Trust, Creggan, Derry/Londonderry
For more info, contact Sabrina Lynch: [email protected] / 02871 373870

📅 Thursday 13 June, 2pm - 4pm
📍 Omagh Library, 1 Spillars Place, Omagh
For more info, contact Tiernach Mahon, Omagh Forum & Rural Association Project: [email protected] / 028 8225 1559

📅 Friday 14 June, 10.30am - 12.30pm
📍 Strabane Health Improvement Project, 115 Balycolman Estate, Strabane
For more info, contact Jarlath McNulty: [email protected] / 028 7138 3557

Don’t miss out on this opportunity to connect, learn, and take charge of your health. Let’s work together to make our community healthier and stronger!

#DiabetesWeek #HealthAwareness #CommunityCare #DiabetesManagement