02. Apr 2018

2018 Fundraiser: Children with diabetes in Kenya

Gwendolyn Carleton
The World Diabetes Foundation’s 2018 fundraiser builds on the learnings from two successful projects supporting children and youth with type 1 diabetes in Kenya.
Kenyan children with type 1 at a WDF-sponsored camp in 2016. WDF’s new fundraiser will build on the learnings of past projects, and expand their impact.
Type 1 diabetes is a complex disease, no matter where you live. But in Kenya, poverty, stigmatisation, ignorance, myths and poor access to quality treatment often add to the difficulties people with the condition face.
In 2008, WDF, Kenya’s Diabetes Management and Information Centre and Kenya’s Ministry of Health set out to do something about it. They began by providing Hba1c testing, diagnostic equipment and insulin*, quarterly home visits and camps for 90 children. 
In 2014, a second phase of the project provided more training, educational materials and camps, and established a national paediatric centre of excellence at Machakos county hospital. The second phase, conducted in collaboration with the Changing Diabetes in Children project and Paediatrics Endocrinologists Training Program in Africa (PETCA), has so far reached more than 1,300 children.
One of the key lessons learned during the project’s second phase was the importance of combined camps for children and parents. Another was the importance of continued support and capacity building for Kenyan healthcare professionals.
More education, better outcomes
The 2018 WDF Fundraiser will act on these learnings by increasing the disease awareness of children with type 1 and their parents and guardians, empowering them to better manage the disease. It also will improve the ability of primary health care workers to diagnose and treat the condition. 
The project deliverables include:
150 children educated about self-care and management of type 1 diabetes 
150 parents/guardians and 30 teachers educated about diagnosis, self-care and management of type 1 diabetes
20 peer educators and group administrators of social media platforms trained in monitoring and evaluation
30 primary health care providers and data officers trained in data collection and reporting of type 1 diabetes in children
Type 1 diabetes awareness provided for more than 4,000 families and 200,000 people
The project will be implemented over a 2-year period (2018-2020).
* Funding for insulin was provided by project partners, as WDF does not fund medication.