2022 Walk organisers mobilise for a common cause

Global Diabetes Walk Ambassadors lead the way in turning enthusiasm into organised awareness raising around the world

01 December 2022 Zuzanna Dzialowska

Diabète Bénin raising local awareness in Parakou, Benin.

The Global Diabetes Walk campaign rerouted itself during the COVID-19 pandemic, encouraging people to walk however they could – with a few friends, alone, or even inside. 2022 marked a return to the campaign’s traditional focus on larger outdoor events. 

In July, the campaign welcomed 2022 Walk organisers with several changes. A new website offered more pictures, news and tips than ever before. The 2022 campaign also introduced a new concept – the Walk Ambassador – organisations that pledged to organise their own Walks and provide guidance to others. 

One of those who benefitted was Ghulam Raza Shah, who reached to Dr Sameera Riaz, the Walk Ambassador in Pakistan, for organising tips and tricks.

“Dr Riaz guided us about diabetes awareness campaign in our school,” said Mr Raza Shah, the Vice-principal of a secondary school in Rohri, Pakistan. “She shared her valuable ideas and suggestions with us and gave the way forward for arranging the event.”

The result was 285 Walks in 84 countries, attracting more than 78,000 participants. Together, one step at a time, they spread World Diabetes Day messages and maintained the tradition and spirit of the 18-year-old Global Diabetes Walk campaign.

2022 Walks ranged from 1 to 15,000 participants, and included many picturesque and unique routes. Hello Doctor Malaysia walked in the green lung of Kuala Lumpur; Hello Doctor Myanmar tried to reach the sky from tree tops while ADICO in El Salvador spread diabetes awareness from the top of a mountain. Diabète Bénin walked 12 kilometres, then held a group fitness session.

“Through this walk, which we organise every year, our NGO aims to help people prevent several diseases including diabetes,” said Dr Abdoulaye Imorou, President of Diabète Bénin. “Together, let's fight effectively against diabetes. We remain mobilised for the common cause.”

WDF’s partners were again a powerful force, organising 40 Walks with more than 42,000 participants.

Global Diabetes Walk organised by ADICO in El Salvador reaching for the stars.

Walks in Africa
95 Walks were held with 23,503 participants in 28 countries (Angola, Benin, Burundi, Cameroon, Comoros, Congo (Brazzaville), Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Somaliland, South Africa, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, and Zimbabwe). The biggest Walks with 3,000 participants were organised by Rwanda NCD Alliance and Physical Activity Association of Tanzania. 

In Africa, the Walk Ambassadors were:
•    Association obésité et de diabète de Côte d’Ivoire,
•    NCD Alliance Kenya,
•    Kenya Defeat Diabetes Association,
•    Ministry of Health Kenya,
•    Rivers State Branch of Medical Women’s Association of Nigeria,
•    Amref Health Africa,
•    Somali Diabetes Management Information Center,
•    Somali Diabetic World, Physical Activity Association of Tanzania (PAAT),
•    Diabetes Care Uganda,
•    and Midlands Diabetes Interest Group.

Walks in Europe
27 Walks were held with 20,727 participants in 15 countries (Armenia, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Czech Republic, Denmark, Georgia, Italy, Kosovo, Scotland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom and Uzbekistan). The biggest Walk was organised by Georgia Red Cross Society who managed to mobilise 15,000 participants across 256 locations. 

In Europe, the Walk Ambassadors were Georgia Red Cross Society and Armenia Red Cross Society.

Walks in Middle East and North Africa
18 Walks were held with 4,607 participants in 9 countries (Afghanistan, Algeria, South Sudan, Sudan, Egypt, Jordan, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates). The biggest Walk event with 2,045 participants took place in Pakistan and was organised by Dilawar Hussain Foundation.

In Middle East and North Africa, the Walk Ambassador was Dr Samreen Riaz.

Walks in North America and Caribbean
22 Walks were held with 1,753 participants in 6 countries (Antigua and Barbuda, Belize, Canada, Haiti, Mexico and United States). The biggest Walk with 1,032 participants took place in Mexico organised by Licenciatura en Educación Deportiva Sede Xalapa, Upav.

In North America and Carribean, the Walk Ambassador was People’s Diabetes Foundation-Belize (PDF-Belize).

Walks in South and Central America 
46 Walks were held with 3,558 participants in 11 countries (Argentina, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Peru, and Venezuela). The biggest Walk with 1,000 participants took place in Argentina, where Sociedad Argentina de Diabetes organised a Walk event in Ciudad de Rosario Provincia de Santa Fe.

In South and Central America, the Walk Ambassadors were Sociedad Argentina de Diabetes and Fundación Vida Nueva. 

Walks in South East Asia
43 Walks were held with 19,222 participants in 5 countries (Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Nepal, and Sri Lanka). The biggest Walk with 5,500 participants took place in India, and was hosted by the Raigarh Ambikapur Health Association (RAHA).

In South East Asia, the Walk Ambassadors were Astha Foundation, Dr Rajesh Jain, Piramal Swasthya, Nepal Development Society and Raigarh Ambikapur Health Association (RAHA).

Walks in Western Pacific
18 Walks were held with 3,411 participants in 8 countries (China, Fiji, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Vietnam and ROC). The biggest Walk with 1,200 participants was organised by Vietnam Diabetes Educators Association.

In Western Pacific, the Walk Ambassadors were Vietnam Diabetes Educators Association and Diabetes Fiji. 

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