Google the word “diabetes” and you will get a myriad of cliché words, images and articles that include everything from heart shaped bowls of fruit to amputation stories. The general public perception of diabetes is usually negative, and not always accurate or telling the full story.
When Pamela Durant’s son was diagnosed with Type1 Diabetes at 20-months old almost 12 years ago, she quickly learned that he and all other people with diabetes – regardless of age or the type - fell into one box. The general consensus is that they must be at fault for their condition and have brought it upon themselves somehow.
“I realized very few people understood or had empathy for my son’s experience. Because he was so young, they assumed I must have done something wrong when I was pregnant. Or, I would hear people talk about adults with Type2 Diabetes and they would blame their lifestyle choices even when lifestyle had nothing to do with it. I could not understand why so many people were quick to blame a person for a medical condition they did not know much about. This does not happen with other chronic conditions.”
“With the exception of a few physicians and healthcare providers, kindness and empathy felt almost nonexistent for people with diabetes. No one should ever feel ashamed of a health condition.” It was these observations and frustrations that led Pamela to create Diapoint – The Place For People Touched By Diabetes.
Wanting to raise her child in a positive way, and encourage him to embrace everything about himself - including his diabetes - Pamela had the vision to create an organization that would educate and encourage all people with diabetes to do the same.
Diapoint is a UAE-based company that supports people with diabetes. This is done through education, diabetes events, support, and health and wellness coaching.
“I would attend events for people with diabetes, and no one was talking about why we were all there. And, it would only happen once a year in November. Diabetes is every day 24/7. I saw so many missed opportunities for education and community. I knew this had to change," says Pamela Durant.
Three years ago, Diapoint also launched the first online shop in the region to cater to people with diabetes. Diapoint focusses on everything that happens after the doctor visit.
“If you are managing your diabetes well, you are visiting your endocrinologist and diabetes team four times a year. Medical advice is essential to managing diabetes. However, diabetes is chronic and with you all the time. That can often be a very lonely place,” she explains.
“We have built something where everyone is welcome, they can easily find information, get the supplies and accessories they need, and feel no shame about diabetes.”
Diapoint is growing and will continue to expand throughout the GCC this year.
You can learn more about Diapoint at www.diapointme.com visit their online shop at www.diapointshop.com and follow them on social media @diapointme.
● Pamela Durant is the founder of Diapoint