Hi all, my name is Aminath Abdul Rahman, all my friends call me Aana I am from Male’ Maldives, the sunny side of life. I was born on 9th July 1985. I completed my studies at Aminiyya School of Male’. I first came to the Diabetes Society of Maldives (DSM) as a registered diabetic patient in 2005 and I got involved in DSM’s activities as a volunteer and I started working at DSM as a full time staff on June 2006.
I got diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of 9. Most people and most doctors weren’t very aware about diabetes then, let alone type 1 diabetes. Not I or my parents were given any information about even the basics of diabetes so I was put on oral medication first and I got worse. So finally I was put on insulin therapy. The first actual information and education I got about diabetes was when I joined the Diabetes Society of Maldives, the DSM team became my second family and my cheerleaders on the field of diabetes. And I have never stopped learning since then.
The greatest challenge faced by people with diabetes in Maldives is unavailability of diabetes medications or supplies. And due to the geographical structure of Maldives it is especially difficult for those living out of the capital city Male’. Insulin and other supplies are scarcely available even in the capital city, hence the double financial burden since it has to be bought from abroad. I am happy to say that for those who are registered at the Diabetes Society of Maldives insulin and testing strips are provided by the “life for a child” Australia.
Although DSM is working to create awareness amongst the general public. Not much effort is made by the Ministry of Health in educating the public on diabetes or supplying the necessary to the diabetic population.
As a young leader in diabetes I with my member association have been working to make people with diabetes and everyone around them (friends and family) more aware on diabetes.
As the Representative of SEA Region on YLD Council I will work very close to all the SEA Regional YLD’s being the mentor they need to take on this huge and worthy responsibility.
Within my member association I have established a diabetic youth group “My Sweet Family “ and we with my member association have been working on the diabetes screening and awareness programs all around Maldives. And I am happy to say that two members from “My Sweet Family “group will be attending the YLD Melbourne as the new young leaders.
For my YLD project I conducted a 5 day diabetes youth camp. And I am proud to say it was the first ever diabetes youth camp of the SEA Region targeted to Diabetic Youth. The main goal of the program at the camp was to allow the youth to feel at ease and accepted in a community where having diabetes is the rule, not the exception. The youth went home feeling more self-confident, self-reliant and having gained the knowledge they need to live successful lives with diabetes.
At the closing ceremony a declaration was presented by the participants. This declaration was later presented through the local TV channels and print Medias. I am planning to conduct these diabetes camps every 2 years, and it will be open to all diabetic youths around the world.