Young Leaders from Kuwait

Diabetes… isn’t the word that made me pause. It wasn’t a word that I learned nor was it a word that I heard during my diagnosis. All I knew was that I did things a little differently than all my peers after spending a week in the hospital. On the other hand my mother had to endure all the stressors as well as fully educate herself to allow me to live a normal childhood. My mother was my guardian angel, as she had dedicated her life to keep me healthy.  

My name is Maryam Al-Ostad, I’m 26 and I’m from Kuwait. I’ve studied accounting at Gulf University for Science and technology. After graduating I realized that what I studied wasn’t my passion. Thus I took project management courses. Now I work as a researcher at the National Centre for Education Development and I’m managing an amazing project. I’m a very ambitious person and always seek for perfection. I try to enjoy every moment of my life and live freely.

I've had diabetes since I was 14 years old. My family was shocked when I got diagnosed, because I was the first member in my family to have diabetes. I wasn’t shocked, because I was young and didn’t know much about the condition. The way my doctor explained it to me made me feel special and strong. I knew that I could handle it. There are moments when I wish that I could have a break from it, even for one day. However, this feeling is just a phase that comes up every now and then.

In my country people with diabetes suffer from social stigma. Lots of people with diabetes don’t like others to know about their condition because of that stigma. People think that we can’t have a normal life and that’s not true. I’m trying to correct their misconceptions through Blue Circle Campaign, but it’s not easy.

My name is Mohammad Y. Al-Bahar, I’m 30 years old, and I was born and raised in Kuwait. I was diagnosed with
type 1 diabetes when I was 2 years old, and I have been living with it for 28 years.

Kuwait is 17.818 kilometeres squared, is located between latitudes 28.45 d and 30.05 d north of the equator and longitudes 46.30 d 48.30 d east. The Population is 2.2 million (750,000 Kuwaiti Nationals), the Official language: Arabic and English, and the Currency is the Kuwait Dinar. There are also 9 islands (Failaka, Bubian, Um Almaradem, Um Alnamil, Warba, Kubbar, Uha, Garouh, Maskan).

My major in college was Management Information Systems (MIS) / Information Technology (IT) at the College of Business Administration, Kuwait University. I have also acquired a professional degree diploma from The Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) from the United Kingdom and held the position of Research and Development officer (Gulf Insurance Co.), with vast exposure in property and casualty insurance policies, such as: Fire, Engineering and Workmen Compensation policies. I specialize in underwriting (U/W), claim handling, developing an automated monthly / quarterly report as well as an automated loss ratio calculation, post-loss and after loss inspections and preparing the survey report.