City Hall bathes in blue for World Diabetes Day
Norwich's City Hall tonight joins more than 200 global landmark buildings marking the first United Nations-observed World Diabetes Day.
Included among the UN campaign are many of the world's most iconic buildings and sites. The global landmarks will light up in blue for diabetes and Norwich's City Hall is the only building in the East of England to bathe in blue as part of the first UN World Diabetes Day campaign.
The Empire State Building in New York was the first building to join the World Diabetes Day campaign and agree to light up in blue. Since then the campaign has been joined by some of the world's most famous landmarks, including the Sydney Opera House, the London Eye, Leaning Tower of Pisa, Tokyo Tower, Niagara Falls, the Burj Al Arab in Dubai, the Aleppo Citadel in Syria, the Obelisk in Buenos Aires, the Sears Tower in Chicago, Christ the Redeemer in Brazil, and the building currently considered the world's tallest: the Taipei 101 Tower in Taiwan.
Norfolk has a relatively high incidence of type 1 diabetes and the number of Norfolk children being diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes has doubled over the past 15 years. There are about 17,000 people with diabetes in East Norfolk and a further 1,500 are diagnosed each year locally.
Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital consultant diabetologist Professor Mike Sampson said: “We think it’s fantastic that City Hall have agreed to do this in recognition of the efforts made by people with diabetes to look after their condition, and to recognise the the increasing number of people with diabetes in Norwich and across Norfolk. The idea to involve Norwich in this initiative was that of diabetes specialist nurse Vivien Aldridge.”
Norwich City Council leader, Steve Morphew said: Diabetes affects the lives of so many people, especially in Norfolk, so we are proud to be backing the UN’s campaign. Anything that raises the profile of this illness has to be welcomed and we are also pleased to see City Hall viewed alongside some of the world’s most famous buildings.
Professor Martin Silink, President of the International Diabetes Federation (IDF), the organisation that leads the World Diabetes Day campaign explained the significance of the lightings: “These buildings are lighting up as beacons of hope for the 246 million people living with diabetes worldwide. The illumination of so many landmarks is a prominent statement to governments everywhere: the global diabetes epidemic can no longer be ignored.”
Today, 246 million people live with diabetes globally. If nothing is done, this figure will reach 380 million within 20 years. The World Diabetes Day Resolution urges governments to implement national policies for the prevention, care and treatment of diabetes in line with the sustainable development of their healthcare systems. This is the first time that a non-communicable disease has been recognised as posing as serious a global health threat as infectious epidemics like malaria, tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS.
Further details of the campaign and how people can show their support can be found at www.worlddiabetesday.org