Social media drives discussions on issues, and the diabetes online community is striving to raise awareness about Type 1 diabetes with some creative social media campaigns. As we approach Diabetes Awareness Month 2014, Insulin Nation takes a look at five T1D campaigns trending now:
The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) is spearheading a campaign asking people with Type 1 diabetes and their loved ones to post a message on Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr calling for diabetes support at 11:00 EDT on November 1st, the start of diabetes awareness month. Supporters will use the social media tool Thunderclap to broadcast the message “Today is #T1Day, the start of #diabetesmonth! Support people living w/ #T1D. Change your profile pic now. #noT1D http://thndr.it/YXy6I2”
Currently, 3700 social media users have signed up for the campaign on Thunderclap, and they have a reach of just under 2 million followers.
This is a photo-based social media campaign aimed at reminding people that Type 1 diabetes is currently a life sentence. Supporters of this campaign take mugshot-like photos holding placards saying they are serving life for the crime of Type 1 diabetes, and that the only bail is a cure.
This campaign has drawn some backlash for its stark tone, but its supporters say that it’s important to remind the public that treating an “invisible” disease can be a draining process, and that a cure is only thing that will set people with Type 1 diabetes completely free.
The Type 1 diabetes social site Glu has launched a seasonal campaign to raise T1D awareness while also providing a means for dealing with November’s excessive squash supply. With the Smash Diabetes campaign, Glu challenges participants to record videos of creative pumpkin smashing to vent the daily frustrations that come with Type 1 diabetes management. The campaign also raises funds for T1D Exchange, an organization dedicated to accelerating Type 1 diabetes research.
This campaign, which began in Summer 2014, is still going strong. It was started by Sierra Sandison’s decision to wear her insulin pump during competition for the Miss Idaho crown. When she won, the hashtag “#showmeyourpump” gained steam as she competed in the Miss America competition. Sandison challenged others to post pictures of wearing their pumps with pride, and the diabetes online community has responded.
Each year, the diabetes online community is getting more social 291media savvy to raise awareness of Type 1 diabetes and the need for more research and better treatment options. Every campaign helps bring Type 1 diabetes out of the shadows, and raise awareness of the needs of the diabetes community.
Strip Safely, an organization that has advocated for better safety standards for test strips and diabetes testing hardware, is now turning its attention to other legislative priorities. Just ahead of the midterm congressional elections on November 4th, the organization is calling on supporters to use the hashtag “#Vote4Dm” in tweets to remind congressional candidates that there are people with diabetes out there, and they vote. Strip Safely also provides pre-written tweets to members of Congress for easy advocacy.
Currently, there are several diabetes-related bills on the floors of Congress, including one that calls on Medicare to cover continuous glucose monitors and diabetes self-management training.
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