March 8, 2017 (Ottawa, ON) – The Congress of Aboriginal Peoples (CAP) has recently joined together with Diabetes Canada to tackle diabetes, which plagues so many people in Indigenous communities across the country.
An initiative CAP and Diabetes Canada has been working on is the introduction of the Food Skills for Families program into Aboriginal communities. Food Skills for Families is a hands-on curriculum based program that makes healthy eating, shopping and cooking easy, quick and fun. The program teaches people how to make healthy meals, snacks and beverage choices and to gain confidence in the kitchen. Programs are delivered to target at risk populations, including Indigenous Peoples.
“Diabetes is an epidemic that is severely impacting our people,” says Congress of Aboriginal Peoples National Chief Robert Bertrand. “This collaboration will ensure the numerous challenges that stem from the disease are addressed in the Indigenous community.”
According to the Canadian Diabetes Association’s 2013 Clinical Practice Guidelines for the Prevention and Management of Diabetes in Canada, diabetes rates are three to five times higher among Aboriginal adults than the non-Aboriginal population. High rates of diabetes among Aboriginal people are attributed to many factors, including genetic predisposition, decreased physical activity, increased obesity and dietary changes from traditional unprocessed food to high-calorie processed foods, among others.
“The epidemic of diabetes cannot be solved alone and engaging in innovative collaborations will create meaningful change,” says Diabetes Canada President and CEO, Rick Blickstead. “We look forward to working closely with the Congress of Aboriginal Peoples to create unique opportunities for collaboration in order to reach more people affected by diabetes in Indigenous communities.”
“Indigenous Peoples face several challenges and obstacles that other Canadians don’t,” says National Chief Bertrand. “This partnership will create solutions that are developed by, and tailored for our people.”
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About the Congress of Aboriginal Peoples
The Congress of Aboriginal Peoples is the national voice representing the interests of Métis, status and non-status Indians, and Southern Inuit Indigenous People living off-reserve. Today, over 70% of Indigenous people live off-reserve.
About Diabetes Canada
Diabetes Canada is the registered national charitable organization that is making the invisible epidemic of diabetes visible and urgent. Diabetes Canada partners with Canadians to End Diabetes through:
• Educational programs and support services;
• Resources for health-care professionals on best practices to care for people with diabetes;
• Advocacy to governments, schools and workplaces; and
• Funding world-leading Canadian research to improve treatments and find a cure.
For more information, visit diabetes.ca or call 1-800-BANTING (226-8464).