Indigenous communities represent almost 5% of the world’s population – nearly 400 million people. Increasing international interest in the health and socio-political needs of Indigenous peoples was reflected in the 2007 UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People. Therein lies recognition that Indigenous people represent some of the poorest and most marginalized communities within nation states. The International Diabetes Federation’s 2013 World Diabetes Congress in Melbourne, Australia has for the first time created a specific Stream dedicated to in-depth discussion of Indigenous issues. Underpinning the Stream is the objective to promote action to overcome the appalling burden of diabetes on Indigenous people.