World Diabetes Day | School Blue-nity How To Guide

Original creation made by Caleb and Lorraine

For the past three years we have acknowledged World Diabetes Day at Caleb’s school. This was born from the need for awareness – Caleb’s first year in elementary school included some unfortunate bumps in the road. As his principal and I took steps to improve protocols, at her suggestion, we decided an annual World Diabetes Spirit Day would not only benefit Caleb emotionally and physically, but also serve to educate the community at large.

It has been an enormous success!

The first year we asked staff and students to wear blue and donate $1 to the JDRF.

His classmates showed support
His classmates showed support

The next year we asked staff and students to wear blue and I created an awareness video that was shown during each lunch wave. (Please feel free to download it and use it too!)

Last year, we asked staff and students to wear blue, we showed the awareness video, assembled all of Caleb’s grade in a blue circle and asked people to donate dollars and supplies to support Team Type 1’s initiative to assist the children of Rwanda living with diabetes.

We like to call this annual initiative School Blue-nity.

There are many ways you can coordinate something similar at your child’s school, your workplace or both.

Check out Sanofi’s blog, Discuss Diabetes, and how they’ve mapped out how you can “Make Blue Cool at School.

Mike Lawson from the Diabetes Hands Foundation gives you simple instructions on how you can incorporate the Big Blue Test as an event. Each person that participates translates to $5 donated to people living with diabetes in need. Do you have ten people in your office? That’s $50. 100 people? $500. 400 staff and students at your child’s school? That’s $2,000!!! So easy and such a worthy cause!

I created a flyer that can be used to promote the Blue Fridays initiative of “Think Blue, Wear Blue.” and The Big Blue Test in one. Copy and distribute – IT COULD NOT BE EASIER!!

If you’ve ever wanted to do something for diabetes awareness or to recognize World Diabetes Day but didn’t know where to start, please check out any or all of these resources!

It’s easy and it makes a difference.

The Big Blue Test Needs You!!

The Big Blue Test is a program of the Diabetes Hands Foundation. It seeks to empower, engage and connect people living with diabetes.

An important part of managing diabetes is leading a healthy, active life. Exercise helps manage blood sugar levels.

An important part of maintaining good, overall well-being is leading a healthy, active life.

The principle is the same for all people – those with and those without diabetes. People with diabetes have the added component of blood sugar control.

The Big Blue Test asks ALL people to get active. Doing something – walking, dancing, yard work, house work, trapezing – it all gets your heart pumping. You feel better for it.

The program continues through World Diabetes Day – November 14th. We want YOU to get active every day, multiple times a day if you can. Then, LOG IN your results at

EVERY TIME A BIG BLUE TEST IS LOGGED, $5 WILL BE DONATED TO HUMANITARIAN DIABETES CHARITIES. The goal is $100,000 to deserving organizations that provide supplies and education to people living with diabetes.

Help yourself while helping others. It’s easy and it’s good for you. There’s even an app for it to make it easier!

But there’s a catch:

We need to get 20,000 tests logged in order to qualify for a penny. Each test accounts for $5, but we need the full 20,000 to get any of the $100,000 generously pledged by Roche Diabetes. More than half the timeframe has passed and we are only have about a quarter of the tests we need logged.

So I am asking you to get active and log it in. Do it now. Do it later. Do it tomorrow. Then to it again and again and ask friends and family to do it with you! The hope is that the Big Blue Test will encourage positive change in people living with diabetes, but also all people, and getting active will simply become part of your daily routine.

If you are wondering where the money goes, watch this video to get an idea.

Help yourself while helping others. It’s a win-win.

Diabetes Hand Foundation Announces 2012 DHF Seeds Grants Awards

Photo Credit – Diabetes Hand Foundation

I am pleased to announce that 9 mini-grants have been awarded to deserving applicants who are making a difference in the lives of people living with diabetes in areas of EMPOWER, EDUCATE and CONNECT. Each advocacy project will receive $2,000 as part of the DHF Seeds grant program for 2012.

Manny Hernandez, President and Founder of the Diabetes Hand Foundation, has this to say about the program:

“Our goal is to support promising projects and help advocates through grants that assist them in taking their projects to the next level.”

Among the recipients are the You Can Do This Project, The World Diabetes Postcard Exchange and Riding on Insulin. Please take a moment to check out all the winning advocacy projects on the Diabetes Hand Foundation Website and their video applications here.

I mentioned our experience at Riding on Insulin yesterday. Their video application is a fabulous summary of of the great things they do:

Disclosure: Earlier this year, I was named to the Board of Directors of the Diabetes Hand Foundation for a three year term. 

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