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Several leading Special Diabetes Program for Indians (SDPI) grantees were presented with the American Diabetes Association’s  John Pipe Voices for Change Award. These programs are recognized for their effective diabetes treatment and prevention services in American Indian and Alaska Native communities. The awards were presented yesterday at the National Indian Health Board’s 30th Annual Consumer Conference in Traverse City, Mich. 

The awards are named in memory of long-time diabetes supporter John Pipe of Wolf Point, Mont., who was a dedicated diabetes advocate and served as a member of the Association’s Native American Initiatives Subcommittee. His longstanding advocacy efforts reached from his local community to Washington, D.C., and affected countless tribal communities.

The 2013 John Pipe Voices for Change Award recognizes SDPI programs that have excelled in the following categories:  Advocacy, Outcomes and Innovation.

Advocacy Award: 

The Fond du Lac Reservation
Cloquet, Minn.
The Fond du Lac Reservation Human Services Diabetes Team, of Cloquet, Minn., educates American Indians about type 2 diabetes prevention and promotes healthier lives with positive lifestyle changes. Members of the Human Services Diabetes Team have used multiple types of advertising with inspiring prevention messaging geared toward the local community and nearby urban community. This messaging uses local Ojibwe people and traditional images, and helps to encourage a healthier lifestyle and diabetes prevention. Marketing in this way helped to reach a larger audience and gave pride to the culture of the Fond du Lac Reservation.

Outcomes Award:

Native American Rehabilitation Association (NARA) Diabetes Treatment & Prevention Program (DTP)
Portland, Ore.
The NARA DTP, of Portland, Ore., has been providing focused services for persons with diabetes or at risk for diabetes since 1999. NARA’s DTP was originally funded by IHS in 1999 via the IHS SDPI Community Directed Diabetes Grant Program. The program expanded in 2004 to include care for people with prediabetes through the award of another IHS SDPI Grant focusing on diabetes prevention. The DTP is working toward a diabetes-free future by providing high quality screening/early diagnosis of diabetes and prediabetes, prevention services for those at risk for the diabetes and treatment for those already affected by diabetes

Innovation Award:

Diabetes Prevention and Control Program, Samuel Simmonds Memorial Hospital
Barrow, Alaska
The Diabetes Prevention and Control Program, Samuel Simmonds Memorial Hospital, of Barrow, Alaska, hosted several events surrounding Healthy Living Week in addition to a Family Fun Day. These events were scheduled to coincide with the Program’s annual Diabetes Clinic which happens around the time the community makes New Year’s healthy living resolutions. Activities were planned for all age groups and the event was a great success in the community. One hundred more people attended this event than another local health fair, which was a major accomplishment for the community.

The SDPI continues to provide Indian health programs and tribal communities the resources and tools they need to prevent and treat diabetes. It funds nearly 400 community based programs, offering local tribes and health programs the opportunity to set priorities that meet the needs of their community. For over a decade Congress has provided funding for the SDPI and the American Diabetes Association has played an integral part in advocating for this important program.  The Association, including the Awakening the Spirit Subcommittee, will continue to work for strong support of SDPI.