For our August meeting we were fortunate to have Laura Pearsall and Gordon Taylor, who are both city councillors for the Abbeymead ward in Gloucester come and give a talk on what it like to be a councillor and what it involves.
After letting is know what got them interested in politics, for Laura it was as a result of getting an apprenticeship in the cities MPs office and for Gordon as a result of meeting an existing councillor at a job interview. Their general council duties consist of meeting their constituents and helping with any issues they have, attending council meetings and discussions with council officers. They also sit on various committees, Gordon is Chair of the city Planning Committee and Laura is a member of the Licensing Committee. Continue reading August 2016 Meeting – Laura Pearsall & Gordon Taylor – Local City Councillors→
For two days in June Mike helped out at the Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Groups Diabetes Awareness Events, one in Gloucester near The Cross on the 16 June and one in Cheltenham in the High Street on the 17 June.
For our June meeting we had Henry Tellwright, a Diabetes Dietician at Gloucester Royal Hospital come along to talk about what is best for us all to eat, which of course is not necessarily what we want to!
Henry was also assisted by two student dieticians, Hannah Bennett and Daniel Lyons. The talked covered how the body deals with food when eaten and the effects of too much sugar and fats for those with diabetes. They also discussed the basics of healthy eating and how in reality this applied to everyone, not just those with diabetes.
There was also a lively debate on the relevant merits of different diets, in particular a low carbohydrate diet, whilst these have been shown to work, the long term effects are not fully understood at present, with more research looking into this. This is not to say people should not use such diets, but its advised that they discuss it with their medical care team first.
Overall it was an interesting and informative evening.
The Group was invited to set up a stand in Waitrose supermarket in Cheltenham as part of their Healthy Living Week. Mike Broome and Graham Terret duly attended on Friday 20 May and were asked to set up by the entrance to the shop cafe – perhaps to give customers pause for thought on what they might eat!!
We were also joined by a representative from the British Heart Foundation. The day was fairly busy with quite a few people stopping to enquire about diabetes and how best to avoid it or how they are controlling their diabetes. There was also quite a number on time we referred people to the British Heart Foundation or vice versa.
Also whilst we were there we were presented with a cheque for £242.00 as a result of us being selected as one of the local charities selected by the store to be part of their Community Matters Collection scheme earlier in the year. A big thank you to Waitrose for choosing us and to its customers for raising such a sum.
All in all the day was a success with not only raising awareness of diabetes but also the Group as well.
The Group was contacted by Hazel Croly from the St James Church (Tredworth) Senior Citizens Club, to ask if someone from the Group would be available to give a talk about diabetes.
Mike Broome volunteered and went along on Tue 19 April to give a short presentation covering what diabetes is, the risk factors, symptoms and what hypos are and how to deal with them. He also explained the truth or not of some of the common myths and misconceptions about diabetes. The most common being that those with diabetes cannot eat sugar, which we all know is not true (but of course it must be controlled!)
The talk appeared to be well received with many of those present saying it had improved their understanding of diabetes.
Mike would like to thank the St James Senior Citizens Club for their much appreciated donation to the Group.
Unfortunately the three local councillors who were due to speak at our April meeting were unable to attend due to unforeseen circumstances, although we hope to have then come along later in the year. However we did have two speakers, first Natasha Scott for Gloucestershire NHS Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and then myself with a Photo Quiz.
Natasha came along to talk about a new Diabetes Footcare Project the CCG are setting up. The aim of the project is to ensure patients requiring footcare are referred to the right people at the right time. It will help supporting GPs and their patients in managing potential footcare complications early on, thereby improving their quality of life and hopefully prevent symptoms getting worse and equally further clinical intervention. Continue reading April 2016 Meeting – Natasha Scott – Diabetes Footcare Project & Mike Broome – Photo Quiz→
After the Annual General Meeting held during the February meeting we were pleased to welcome Lisa Cooper, a Diabetes Specialist Nurse from the Specialist Diabetes Service at Gloucestershire Care Services.
Lisa gave a very interesting talk on what effects diabetes has on different parts the body such as the pancreas, eyes, muscles etc. To make it easier to understand she used some of the props and material used in the “Diabetes and You” course that the Specialist Diabetes Service run. One of the interesting points, which of course most with diabetes know, but probably do not always think about, was about the different ways food & drinks work in relation to carbohydrates and whether they are fast or slow acting.
The Groups Annual General Meeting was held during the February Meeting, of which the minutes, including the Chair’s & Treasure’s reports, have been sent to all members.
Elections took place for the Group Committee. Margaret Skinner volunteered to join the Committee and was voted on by a unanimous vote of those present. There were no other volunteers to join the committee. The remaining existing Committee members put themselves up for re-election, and were again accepted by a unanimous vote. The Committee comprises of:
The group again attended the Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trusts Diabetes Community Conference on the 27 January, held at the Hatherly Manor Hotel. The conference was aimed at healthcare professionals from around the county who have an interest in diabetes treatment and care. We set up a stand to promote the Group amongst those attending.
Mike Broome and Mike Coombs attended on a rather damp & chilly day. Also present again this year was Geoff Davies, the Treasurer of the Forest of Dean Diabetes UK Group. Most of the other stands were either from NHS diabetes related medical services, or manufactures and suppliers of diabetes equipment and medicines. Continue reading Diabetes Community Conference→