: 29 Nov 2009
The global call for action against diabetes came alive in Dubai on Friday 13 November, as over 4000 UAE residents took part in a 3.1km distance walkathon organised by Landmark Group, in close coordination with Dubai Sports Council.
The event drew participants from all walks of life and they all had a common objective - to 'Beat Diabetes'. The walkathon in Dubai was one of numerous activities organised across 160 countries worldwide to mark the birthday of Fredrick Banting, who is credited with the discovery of insulin. As early as 5.45am participants thronged in their hundreds to register for the walk at Oasis Centre. The free diabetes test centre also recorded a large number of patronage as over 2500 people took the test between 6.00am and 10.00am on Friday November 13.
Renuka Jagtiani, Director, Landmark Group, commented: "We are most delighted about the energy and enthusiasm displayed towards the 'Beat Diabetes' cause; the turnout today is ample proof that the fight against diabetes in the UAE will be won."
A number of organisations who share the need to address the incidence of diabetes in the UAE supported the event; Jeremy Trevis, Head of Compliance and Assurance, Standard Chartered UAE said: "Combating preventable blindness is a key priority on Standard Chartered's sustainability agenda. In the UAE, diabetes is a leading cause of avoidable blindness and so we're proud to support the 'Beat Diabetes Walk' to help raise awareness, particularly about vision related complications as a result of diabetes."
Johnson & Johnson provided the glucometers and testing strips for the test centre at Oasis Centre while Rashid Hospital provided medical experts to operate the test centre. Other organisations that supported the event include Al Ain Water, BNP Paribas, New India Assurance, Direct Shipping, APL, Maersk, Kuehne Nagel, Fitness First, Zee TV AND Vectramind.
Addressing participants after the walk, Micky Jagtiani, Chairman, Landmark Group said: I strongly urge you all not to let the Beat Diabetes enthusiasm die as you leave here today, but rather, continue to 'walk the talk' in your daily lives and make diabetes less visible in our society."
To sustain awareness for the campaign, Beat Diabetes wrist bands are being distributed for free at Oasis Centre and all Landmark Group stores across the UAE - including, Home Centre, Babyshop, Centrepoint, Splash, Shoe Mart, Lifestyle, Beautybay, Centrepoint, Q Home Décor, Max, Emax, Fun City, Spaces, Gourmet Station and Shoexpress.