Abu Dhabi, October 2013: Organisations across the UAE have stepped-up support to Imperial College London Diabetes Centre’s (ICLDC) Start Walking. initiative in the lead up to November’s ‘Walk 2013’ at Yas Marina Circuit, Yas Island.
More than three million steps have been notched up since the grass roots activity launched in June of this year, with over two million taken during a two week period alone, which included activation during the recent visit of international basketball star Kobe Bryant.
The UAE's first Kobe Bryant Health and Fitness Weekend - which was organised by Maven Marketing and Events - came out in support of ICLDC's campaign with over 40 children playing for more than 120 minutes to notch-up an impressive tally of 1.6 million steps in support of Start Walking.
Also in the UAE capital, Occidental Oil and Gas International LLC (Oxy), joined in the campaign via its signature 'Corporate Wellness Day,' which is organised in to promote well-being by providing resources to educate employees and families and raise awareness of diabetes. The day began with a fitness challenge among Oxy employees, followed by a healthy lifestyles exhibition, a lecture on diabetes, and a walk which saw 100 individuals add more than 103,000 steps to Start Walking.
The campaign’s own Play for Life Football tournament also pulled out the stops with in excess of 270,000 steps collected in a walk organised on the first day around the main Zayed Sports City stadium. Organising executive teams, sponsors and more than 240 players from 12 corporates joined the walk. Over the five night tournament, the players added an impressive 2.2 million steps to the Start Walking. tally.
Al Ain also joined in the activation, with more than 40 colleagues at the Zayed House For Islamic Culture joining in a walk around the Centre’s grounds. This followed a presentation to management on healthy lifestyles for the management and prevention of diabetes by ICLDC’s Dr Farhana Bin Lootah.
Meanwhile, Cerner Middle East in Dubai joined the campaign chalking up 35,000 steps by braving the afternoon sun in walking around the corporate office at the start of their on-going regional Start Walking drive.
Start Walking. was launched by ICLDC’s public health awareness campaign, ‘Diabetes-Knowledge-Action’ under the patronage of Her Highness Sheikha
Fatima bint Mubarak.
- Since its launch in 2007, the campaign has promoted the importance of active lifestyles.
- A healthy diet and a brisk walk for 30 minutes every day has beenshown to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes by up to 58 per cent.
- More than 371 million people worldwide are living with diabetes, citing the latest figures from the International Diabetes Federation suggesting that the condition affects 18.9 per cent of the UAE population, placing the Emirates at number 11 worldwide.
- Almost 50 per cent of people living with diabetes are not aware of their condition
Start Walking. is set to stage a collection of mini-walks right up to November in the run up to the annual Walk 2013, walkathon at YAS Marina Circuit on November 15, the day after World Diabetes Day.
Individuals, groups and organisations nationwide can take part in Start Walking. by forming walking groups or events - with the campaign's website diabetesuae.ae regularly updated with ideas, downloadable posters and flyers.