20 July 2014

Campaign for creating Armenian Charity Diabetic Support Center

Diabetes isn't just a disease; it's a way of life with blood glucose meters, diet, and challenges.
Efforts are accelerated to create the Armenian Charity Diabetic Support Center (ACDSC)
This will be a specialized medical and educational center with professional staff and self-help group that can provide medical, educational, social, and emotional support for people affected by diabetes.
People, especially children and disabled adults from socially disadvantaged families, will get free health services and treatment and will find strength by communicating with others who experience similar needs.
The Center has announced the following goals:

To help Armenia diabetics to solve their health problems and enable them on their turn to help others.
To offer comprehensive diabetes management and education program for children.  
To offer individually tailored and group education sessions for diabetes self-management, including blood sugar (glucose) monitoring, nutrition guidelines, carbohydrate counting and meal planning, medication management, insulin adjustment and lifestyle change.
The Center is asking for the public's support to purchase 20 units of medical equipment with a total cost $93,630.

The acquisition of such equipment will allow concurrent charitable services to diabetics and paid services to those who can afford to pay. Additional money will be spent on obtaining medicines and educational materials for the main group of beneficiaries.
Why is there a need?
Diabetes mortality rate remains high in Armenia and it is third leading cause of mortality in Armenia.
What they have accomplished so far
In 2012, U.S. Peace Corps' volunteer, Stewart Brewster, suggested the idea of a Diabetes Support Group for Noyemberyan. Mr. Brewster developed the goals and objectives of this group and with a motivated group of diabetics started monthly meetings. The ACDSC initiate group founded Noyemberyan Diabetes Support Group, the first such diabetes support group in Armenia.

It was soon apparent that the diabetes wellness program would not be successful unless the members could regularly measure their glucose and learn wellness methods to minimize excess blood glucose.

Cooperating with "Concern-Energomash" CJSC, which is the exclusive distributor for "ROCHE DIAGNOSTICS GMBH" (Germany) in Armenia, the initiative group distributed about 500 free glucose meters in Tavush Region. This was the first time the members ever owned a meter.  
This experience was very successful and a lot of people from all 11 regions of Republic of Armenia were interested to become a member of the Center. 
Thousands of requests from different regions of Armenia led them to think about the creation of the charity diabetes care center on the state level. For this purpose, at the beginning of 2014, the initiative group registered Charity Foundation called "Healthy Child". Mrs. Narine Arustamyan was named as the president of the center.
The Charity Center purchased a 4 storey building in Artashat town (Ararat Region) to provide medical and educational services to socially disadvantaged diabetics from all over Armenia. Artashat location was convenient for visiting patients from all 11 regions of Armenia.

The Charitable Foundation has a Board  with 7 members: 6 doctors and the head of Noyemberyan Diabetics Support Centre.

In April 2014, the Board members managed to conclude a cooperation agreement with the "Grand Holding" Charity Foundation with the annual donation fund of $100,000, which will be spent on medicines and 6 doctors' salary. 
Since 2014 the Center is also a partner with WiRED International Organization (http://www.wiredinternational.org).

To read more about the project, statistics about diabetes in Armenia or services of the Armenian Charity Diabetic Support Center, please contact Hasmik Azibekyan at h.azibekyan@gmail.com 

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