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Diabetes UK issues travel advice ahead of Hajj pilgrimage


Diabetes UK has issued travel advice for Muslims with diabetes who are planning on taking part in the Hajj pilgrimage.

The Hajj is expected to take place between 1 October and 6 October. The Hajj is one of the Five Pillars of Islam and it is a religious duty for every adult Muslim physically able to do once in their lifetime.

Muslims may be required to walk distances of over 20km per day as part of the Hajj, so Diabetes UK is encouraging everyone planning to travel to visit their GP to have their feet checked before they embark on the journey to Mecca. It is important that everyone with diabetes wears appropriate footwear suitable for walking long distances throughout the Hajj and that they check their feet every day of for anything unusual such as sore spots, hard skin and breaks in the skin.

Diabetes UK has also issued a list of top 5 travel tips for anyone traveling to Saudi Arabia:
Saudi Arabia is 2 hours ahead of the UK, so think about how this will affect the time you take you diabetes medication.
If you take insulin, the hot climate in Saudi Arabia may also affect how your insulin works, so make sure you test more regularly.
If you are carrying insulin and sharp items such as needles on the plane then make sure you have a letter from your GP.
Take twice the quantity of medical supplies you would normally use for your diabetes and make sure you pack some extra snacks in case your plane is delayed.
Before travelling it is a good idea to contact your insulin manufacturer to see if your insulin is supplied in Saudi Arabia.
Jenne Patel, Diabetes UK Equality and Diversity Manager, said: “The Hajj is a once in a lifetime experience for Muslims, and those with diabetes need not let their condition get in the way of the pilgrimage. With careful planning and speaking to your GP in good time, there is no reason you can’t go on Hajj.

“But it’s important to consider how your trip will affect your diabetes before you embark on Hajj. There are a lot of things to think about and to organise – such as getting a letter from your GP if you need to take insulin on the plane, preparing your insulin and medication for travel and making sure you take more than enough supplies.

“We are also encouraging anyone planning to observe Hajj this year to get their feet checked before they travel, to make sure that they are healthy and up to the pilgrimage. This is because people with the condition are more likely to develop serious foot problems.”

For more information on traveling with diabetes visit http://www.diabetes.org.uk/Guide-to-diabetes/Living_with_diabetes/Travel-and-insurance/ or call the Diabetes UK Careline on 0345 123 2399.


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Diabetes UK family event – places available


Diabetes UK’s Northern and Yorkshire region will be hosting a Family Weekend for families who have a child with diabetes this autumn.

The event is open to all children with diabetes and will be held at Redworth Hall Hotel in Darlington from September 26 until September 28.
Family events can make an important difference to the lives of children and families living with diabetes and there are still some places available.

Parents have found the experience can make an important difference to their children.

One parent said: “My daughter had a superb time, it really helped her to be around others with diabetes. Huge thank you to all the volunteers on the event; such lovely people who helped my daughter feel better about her diabetes.”

A young person with diabetes also spoke about how much he enjoyed the event and could not wait to go again. “I made new friends and had lots of fun. I gained confidence and independence. It was a fantastic experience I would love to go again. “

During the weekend, parents attend relaxed, supportive and informative discussion groups while their children, including siblings without diabetes, enjoy their own packed programme enjoying fun activities, trips out and educational sessions.

Linda Wood, Regional Manager for Diabetes UK in the Northern and Yorkshire region, said: “Our Family Weekend is a fantastic way to meet other children and families living with the condition. Families get to share their experiences in an informal environment and are given a huge amount of support. We know that families often go on to form lasting friendships with others going through exactly the same thing.

“The weekend gives parents and children the opportunity to gain the skills, confidence and knowledge to live with and self manage diabetes. It also provides families access to a healthcare team to discuss all aspects of the condition.”

The cost of the weekend is £140 per participant aged 14 and above and £90 per child up to 13. This includes accommodation, food and refreshments, snacks, activities and trips out.

Families may be able to obtain funding to attend the event through their local hospital or Diabetes UK Voluntary Group. If families are unable to secure funding a Diabetes UK Bursary may be available.
 
For more information and to download an application form please visit www.diabetes.org.uk/careevents, email This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it or telephone 020 7424 1000. The event is open to families with children of all ages.

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Diabetes UK young people’s event – places available


Diabetes UK will be hosting a Children and Young Peoples event later this year for young people with diabetes.

The residential event offers a unique and exciting opportunity for young people with diabetes to enjoy a fun packed weekend together and learn more about how to manage their condition.

The event takes place at Claythorpe Court, Grantham and is open to any child aged 7 - 11 with diabetes.
During the weekend young people enjoy lots of fun-filled activities including abseiling, high ropes, kayaking, raft building and aeroball.  They also meet other young people with diabetes and are able to share their experiences in a relaxed, informal environment.
A health care team will also be on hand to discuss all aspects of diabetes and give them any advice they need.

Parents have found the experience can make an important difference to their children.

One parent said: “My daughter had a superb time, it really helped her to be around others with diabetes. Huge thank you to all the volunteers on the event; such lovely people who helped my daughter feel better about her diabetes.”

A young person with diabetes also spoke about how much he enjoyed the event and could not wait to go again. “I made new friends and had lots of fun. I gained confidence and independence. It was a fantastic experience I would love to go again. “

Linda Wood, Regional Manager for Diabetes UK in the Northern and Yorkshire region, said: “Our care events are a fantastic way to for young people to gain skills, confidence and knowledge to live with and self-manage diabetes. “

The event takes place on 25-27 October and costs £110 per child.  This includes accommodation, food and refreshments, snacks, activities and trips out.

Families are welcome from across the Midlands, Yorkshire and Lincolnshire and may be able to obtain funding to attend the event through their local hospital or Diabetes UK Voluntary Group. If families are unable to secure funding a Diabetes UK Bursary may be available.
 
For more information and to download an application form please visit www.diabetes.org.uk/careevents, email This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it or telephone 020 7424 1000.

 
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