Assembly of First Nations Acknowledges Aboriginal Diabetes Awareness Day, Celebrates Healthy Living Initiatives

by ahnationtalk on May 1, 2015340 Views

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Assembly of First Nations Acknowledges Aboriginal Diabetes Awareness
Day, Celebrates Healthy Living Initiatives

May 1, 2015

(Ottawa, ON) – To mark National Aboriginal Diabetes Awareness Day, Assembly of First Nations (AFN) National Chief Perry Bellegarde and AFN Regional Chief Roger Augustine call for continued support for initiatives promoting healthy living and diabetes prevention among First Nations.

“Diabetes is too common among First Nations and we applaud all efforts to raise awareness of prevention,” said AFN National Chief Perry Bellegarde.  “Today I commend the work being done to encourage healthy, active lifestyles and the positive impacts this has on our people and in our communities.  More must be done.  This is why AFN is pushing for action now.  All First Nation peoples must have access to healthy foods, diabetes care and prevention programs that are community-driven and based on needs.  AFN will seek further clarification on federal reinvestments for the Aboriginal Diabetes Initiative as indicated since the recent federal Budget.”

Last week, AFN presented at the Senate Standing Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology regarding the increasing incidence of obesity in Canada, with specific points on causes, consequences and recommendations moving forward.

“Obesity is an epidemic among First Nations people and while this is an unfortunate reality, it is also the most significant modifiable risk factor contributing to the development of diabetes,” said AFN New Brunswick-PEI Regional Chief Roger Augustine, who leads the national effort in the area of chronic diseases. “Chronic illnesses related to obesity costs everyone, and that’s why AFN has called for sustainable long-term investments aimed at results and that is why we support community-driven solutions to diabetes and other chronic diseases.  The AFN has forged successful partnerships focused on health and wellness, including support for Just Move It Canada and our work with AFN youth to lead IndigenACTION.”

AFN supports the efforts of the National Aboriginal Diabetes Association (NADA) and welcomes the recent release of the Healthy Breakfast Toolkit, a new resource to help communities raise awareness of the benefits of a healthy breakfast in preventing the risk of type 2 diabetes.  For more information on the investing in healthy breakfast in communities and other NADA resources please visit:  http://www.nada.ca/nada-d/.

Just Move It Canada (www.justmoveit.org) is an online web tool chronicling community-driven physical activity and wellness initiatives aimed at promoting and motivating health and fitness among Indigenous communities in Canada launched in 2012.

IndigenACTION is aimed at fostering partnerships between Indigenous athletes and the public and private sectors in support of healthy living, recreation and sport.  The sixth annual IndigenACTION 5K Friendship Run is taking place at the AFN Annual General Assembly in Montreal this July. For more information on #IndigenACTION visit http://www.afn.ca/index.php/en/policy-areas/indigenaction/.

National Aboriginal Diabetes Awareness Day is recognized annually on the first Friday in May.

The Assembly of First Nations is the national organization representing First Nations citizens in Canada.

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Contact information:

Jenna Young Castro, Assembly of First Nations Communications Officer
613-241-6789, ext 401 or cell: 613-314-8157 or email jyoung@afn.ca

Alain Garon, Assembly of First Nations Bilingual Communications Officer 613-241-6789, ext 382 or cell: 613-2920857 or email agaron@afn.ca

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